For the families who lived along the England-Scotland
was hard with constant warring between the two countries.
The armies who continually passed by harassed the local
population demanding food without payment and destroying
everything, including homes and crops, in their path.
As a result, the families had to depend on other ways
to survive. They took to reiving - raiding for cattle,
sheep and whatever else could be transported.
For over three hundred years, reiving was a way of life with The Border Reivers launching their violent attacks far beyond their home territory.
With the accession of James I in 1603, law and order returned and the Reivers reign gradually ended. Many of their descendants became pitmen in Northumberland and Durham. Some emigrated to Australia and America. The first man on the moon was an Armstrong, descended from the Reivers of that name.
Today, the remains of Reivers’ fortified strongholds bear witness to these troubled times and visitors can explore this fascinating region on The Reivers Trail.