VISITORS to the Borders this year are being encouraged to discover the unique stories to be found in the region.

Whether it's ghost stories or tales of Thomas the Rhymer and the fairy world, staff at VisitScotland's Jedburgh iCentre have more than 30 years' experience of welcoming visitors and sharing the Borders' rich history with them.

VisitScotland's theme for this year is the Year of Stories, which aims to highlight the stories inspired by, written or created in Scotland.

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Chris Macdougall, visitor services advisor at the iCentre, said: "The Year of Stories presents the ideal opportunity for our visitor services advisors to recount some of the fascinating people and places to discover right across Scotland.

“We would encourage locals and visitors alike to pop in to our iCentre at Murray’s Green for suggestions on some of the fantastic things to see and do across the Scottish Borders."

The Borders' rich history of folklore and local legends makes it the ideal destination for visitors this year.

The region boasts tales such as the story of Lord Willian de Soules who lived and died at Hermitage Castle during Robert the Bruce's reign – his ghost is said to haunt the castle ruins.

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Another famous Borders character is Thomas the Rhymer. The poet and prophet claimed to have connections to the world of fairies and inspired the likes of Sir Walter Scott and James Hogg. There are a number of locations in the region linked to Thomas, including Rhymers' Tower in Earlston and the Rhymers Stone near the Eildons.

Chris added: "Between us we have more than 30 years’ experience welcoming visitors.

"We love nothing more than regaling our visitors with a tale or two about some of the many interesting and unique stories in the region.

"It is often the more quirky and unusual details about local attractions and stories that visitors remember.

“We’re also always keen to hear from local businesses and community groups about how we can work together to promote new businesses, products and destinations to our visitors.

"Our iCentre is an important part of the town and we are keen to work with other tourism businesses locally to ensure that returning visitors receive a warm welcome and get to see the best sites and attractions the region has to offer."

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As part of the Year of Stories a number of events have been planned in the Borders this summer, including events linked with the Borders Book Festival in Melrose from June 16-19, Of Scotland's Soils and Soul at Dawyck Botanic Garden near Stobo in June, and A Yarn Worth Spinning – a multimedia exhibition – at the Great Tapestry of Scotland in Galashiels from May 14-June 12.

For more information on Scotland’s Year of Stories, visit: