Explore the Area
Who We Are
Where We Are
Come walking in the beautiful glen of the Holms Water in the Scottish Borders. Near the village of Broughton between Peebles and Biggar, and just 30 miles south of Edinburgh, it is an ideal place to come for a quiet stroll and picnic by the river or a more strenuous hill climb.
Glenholm is a small community at the heart of the Holms Water glen, once served by a church and school. Although neither are any longer in use, one corner of the church still remains and is set within the old churchyard. The school was closed in 1943 but the old school building still exists and has been renovated recently to form part of the Glenholm Centre.
Glenholm is surrounded by Cardon Farm, a working upland sheep farm of approximately 1000 acres. Once supporting a farm manager, a shepherd and their families, now it is dependent on supplementary incomes and external subsidies to survive.
The farm can be divided into three areas. The first area, the low ground, is stocked with cattle and sheep but also has arable fields sown with barley, rape and grass. The north-west hill is permanent grassland with cattle and sheep, while the south-east hill is heather and stocked with blackface sheep.
Four routes help you to explore the farm. These were way marked and stiles were installed as part of the Glenholm Wildlife Project. They all start at the Glenholm Centre (230m). Maps and directions of each walk are available from the Glenholm Centre but may also be displayed using the icon alongside each walk's description. Each walk is also described in more detail on the Glenholm Wildlife Project Upland Walks page.
►The Riverside Walk is a gentle walk of about 2 kilometres which goes up the Holms Water glen using the glen road at the valley's edge and returns along the riverside. Although wet in places there are no stiles and the route is usually suitable for walkers with dogs.
►The Fort Walk is just over 3 kilometres in length. It starts along the glen road at the edge of the valley floor, then follows a path up a gulley which cuts into the hill on the south-east side of the valley. Almost at the head of the gulley the route climbs quite steeply to the Chester Rig fort (333m), a fine two-ringed Iron Age fort and well worth a view.
From the fort the route follows a more gentle path back down to the road and back to the Glenholm Centre. Some parts of the walk may be wet. There are two stiles but both are alongside gates so this route is usually suitable for walkers with dogs. Please observe the farm etiquette suggestions before setting out.
►The Blakehope Walk is a longer walk of six and a half kilometres and extends the Fort Walk up to the farm boundary near Chester Rig Head (448m) and optionally to the summit of Blakehope Head (542m). It returns by following the farm boundary down to the eastern edge of Cardon Farm and then back to the Glenholm Centre.
This is a more challenging walk. Only one stile exists and it is adjacent to a gate so the walk is usually suitable for walkers with dogs. Great care must be taken of cattle and sheep, so you may need to keep your dogs on leads for much of the time. Please observe the farm etiquette suggestions before setting out.
►The Marches Walk is the longest and most challenging walk of about 10 kilometres. As closely as possible, it follows the Cardon Farm boundary. The south-east half of the walk follows the same route as the Blakehope Walk. The north-west half climbs to the hill top and then follows the farm boundary to the far western edge of the farm.
There are several stiles with no accompanying gate on this route. In addition the fields that the route uses are often home to cattle. As such the walk is generally unsuitable for walkers with dogs. Some parts of this walk can also be particularly wet.
Before setting out on any walk please read the section on farm etiquette first. If in doubt do ask at the Centre before leaving, and remember to let us know if you see anything interesting or unusual.
When walking in Glenholm please observe the following guidelines:
Please note that visitors to Glenholm explore the area at their own risk. Where possible please follow the routes which have been way marked for you and if you see anything that concerns you please take no direct action but notify the Glenholm Centre as soon as possible.
Glenholm is easily reachable by car. It is close to the A701 two miles south-west of Broughton, 6 miles east of Biggar and 12 miles west of Peebles. The A74 at Moffat is twenty miles to the south. The glen road is clearly sign-posted Glenholm. Thereafter follow the signs for the Glenholm Centre. Maps and more detailed directions may be found on their own web page.
Visitors are welcome to park at the Glenholm Centre
The Glenholm Tea Room offers morning coffees, afternoon teas and snack lunches We are open April to October at the weekends, 10:00 - 5:00. We are very happy to open at other times by prior arrangement, just give us a call to discuss your requirements.