Duns law on the estate is the historic scene of the Scottish Covenanters rising against King Charles 1 in 1639 under General Leslie, who was quartered in the Castle.
The castle has 1900 acres of gardens, meadow and woodland. The lake and surrounding area is a Nature Reserve with abundant wildlife.
Duns Castle Nature Reserve
This reserve is contained within what was a glacial drainage channel. The Hen Poo' and the Mill Dam were created during extensive landscaping work done in the 18th century. These ponds are used by mute swans and various duck which appear in numbers at certain times of the year.
The surrounding woodland is home to both green and great spotted woodpeckers and many of the local smaller birds including goldcrest. Redstarts have been recorded there. Roe deer, badger and red squirrel are to be found too. In season, butterflies and moths flit around the wood edge.
On a summer's day a walk round the nature reserve is a pleasant way to spend a spare hour.
This small hill, which is 713 feet high, overlooks parts of the town and also Duns Castle It is famous for the fact that it was on this hill that General Leslie, with his covenanting army of 12,000 men, camped in 1639 during their successful campaign to stop Charles I replacing the Scottish Kirk by the Church of England. The cairn marks the spot where the men took their Oath of Allegiance to the 'Covenant for Religion, Crown and Country'. The remains of their defences can be seen on the summit. There, too, are signs of the fortifications left by the much earlier inhabitants of the hill - from the Iron Age farming community.
“In castle grounds of woodland and lake - a fittingly historic Borders setting . . ."Scotland's Border country.