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One of Us: Discover Peebles and the Scottish Borders

BBC1's Highland thriller was actually filmed in The Borders - and it's well worth a visit

Published: Monday, 22nd August 2016 at 6:00 am

One of Us doesn't exactly make Scotland look appealing. In episode one, the Highlands look stormy and very wet. Not to mention the fact that there's a murderer on the loose.


In fact, most of the BBC1 thriller was filmed in and around a town called Peebles, which isn't in the Highlands at all. It's on the River Tweed in the west of the Scottish Borders. What's more, it's really rather lovely – but don't just take our word for it.

"Where we shot was so beautiful," says Juliet Stevenson, who plays a grieving mother. "My mum’s family come from The Borders and it was a real joy to be there. Some parts have an amazingly bleak landscape but others are very soft and gentle with rolling streams."

Juliet Stevenson, Joe Dempsie, Joanna Vanderham and Georgina Campbell need to work on their camouflage skills in episode two

Joanna Vanderham, who plays Stevenson's daughter and hails from Scone, was proud to be on home turf. "You’ll see how stunning it is and that’s not green screen, its real! The way it’s written encapsulates the landscape as another character. Also I was really close to my home so I could get home cooked meals pretty often!"

"It’s a lovely place to work with incredibly vast landscapes which can also look incredibly isolating," adds Joe Dempsie who plays her brother. "Approaching Scottish winter on night shoots at 3.00am with rain machines hasn’t been great but there is no other way to shoot those scenes. When you read it in the script you think how great it is, until you have to actually do it and realise your costume is essentially just a long sleeved t-shirt!"

Not convinced yet? Here are a few other reasons to visit Peebles...

1. It's much easier to get to than the Highlands. It's only an hour's drive from Edinburgh and just over two hours from Newcastle.

2. You can go for lovely walks along the River Tweed, which is famous for its salmon and trout. (Peebles motto is "Against the stream they multiply")

Peebles and the River Tweed

3. Peebles is really old. It predates the reign of King David I (1124-53). In 1549, when the Scottish Borders battles were raging, it was nearly completely razed by the English.

4. There's no shortage of golf courses, with scenery easily as spectacular as those further north.

5. It's on the tranquil 95-mile Tweed Cycleway, beginning at 650ft above sea level at Biggar and finishing on the coast at Berwick-upon-Tweed. Nearby Glentress boasts one of Britain's best mountain-biking centres.

6. As well as lots of historic buildings and monuments, Peebles has lots of lovely independent shops.

7. For experienced walkers, there are a lot of routes over southern Scotland's highest hills.

8. Naturally, there's a castle: Neidpath Castle. It's about a mile out of town and said to be haunted by the youngest daughter of the Earl of March who was forbidden to marry the son of a local laird because he was beneath her and died of a broken heart. Sir Walter Scott wrote a poem about her.

Why do you love Peebles or the Scottish Borders? Let us know in the comments box below.

Radio Times Travel

Durham, Edinburgh and classic rail journeys, from £279pp. Travel the newly re-opened Borders Railway on a stunning journey from Tweedbank to Edinburgh, and enjoy the spectacular scenery of the route from Durham to Berwick-upon-Tweed. You'll also have time to explore the beautiful cities of Durham, Edinburgh and York on this four-day break. Click here for more details and to book.


Loch Lomond and Scotland's Secret Coast, from £479pp. This wonderful holiday's host of sights and visits are set against the backdrop of some of Scotland's finest coastal and mountain scenery. Visit historic Stirling Castle and Bute's Mount Stuart House, Britain's most astounding Gothic mansion, tour beautiful Loch Lomond and the Trossachs, and explore the delightful Argyllshire coast, including the opportunity to cruise on an historic steamship. Click here for more details and to book.

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