A New Bench for the Village Green

Help us to have a new bench made especially for our Village Green by Sam Bowsher, chainsaw carver. The bench will sit at the North of the Green looking towards the Eildon Hills and will be a great feature for years to come.

Visit our Justgiving campaign page to donate 

The Village Green Steering Group would like to thank the following organisations/individuals for their support:

Scottish Land Fund for providing capital funding to enable our community to purchase our Village Green, alongside our community who gave generously to enable the purchase of the Green to go ahead.

Reuben Singleton of Tweed Ecology who has given advice and support to the project.

Bright Green Nature for awarding us a Microgrant to enable us to purchase seeds and plants to ensure the Green remains an asset to the community and to nature. 

Merlindale Nature for their kind donation of Yellow Rattle seed to help us get our wildflower area established.

Woodland Trust for supplying mixed native hedging saplings to enable us to establish a hedge along the North and West boundary of the green. This will attract wildlife and provide valuable additional wildlife habitat.

Willie Kerr of Milmount Farm for his time and expertise in managing the trees. 

Lisa and Ross Laurie for sharing their expertise and managing the Citizen Science Bioblitz Project. 

All of the volunteers who have given their time and energy to support the project.

What's Happening with the Green........

A group of volunteers are meeting regularly to develop and deliver plans to enhance our Village Green to make it an eco-friendly space which can also meet the needs of the community and visitors for small gatherings. 

Immediate Works : Willie Kerr from Millmount Farm has kindly offered to do necessary work to the established trees to ensure that telegraph wires crossing the Green are not damaged. We have also asked him to address the overgrown trees around the bus stop.

Maintenance: SBC have kindly agreed to continue to cut the grass on the Green until we are able to establish a volunteer rota. We are working to draft a long-term maintenance plan which will be delivered by volunteers.

Longer term plans : We have started to catalogue the plant and wildlife species which inhabit the Green to provide a baseline from which we can measure success in terms of improving the area's biodiversity. The launch of our Citizen Science Project, led by Lisa Laurie was a great success and will continue for the next 12 months. We have also kindly been offered support by Reuben Singleton of Tweed Ecology who has had a 'walk-over' the green and offered advice re planting and maintenance and has prepared a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal report which will support our future applications for funding. 

We have been successful with an application to Bright Green Nature's Microgrant Fund which will enable us to buy wildflower seeds and plants for the woodland area. We have also had a donation of Yellow Rattle seeds from Merlindale Nature which will help us to prepare the ground for the wildflower sowing. 

Volunteers have already braved the weather to clear a path into the woodland area and plant bluebell bulbs which we hope to see  spread and provide early spring colour over the coming years. 

The well in the woodland appears on the 1899 OS map but may date back much further - although well preserved it requires repairs to ensure it remains a feature for generations to come. We have had advice from Historic Environment Scotland as to how best to restore it to its former glory and are seeking funding to get the necessary works undertaken. 

We are looking to raise funding to enable us to install benches and picnic tables on the Green for the use of residents and visitors. 

Our Steering Group meet monthly - please get in touch if you would be interested in joining us. 

The plan below is the draft we are working towards achieving. If you have any comments/queries or suggestions please get in touch. 

See our meeting notes below for updates:

(Updated 6.2.24)

Village Green Planting Plan FINAL.pdf
Village Green Steering Group notes 7th Jan 24
Village Green Steering Group notes 25th Nov 23
Village Green Steering Group notes 15th Sep 2023
Village Green Steering Group notes 4th Aug 23
Village Green Steering Group notes 25th June 23
Village Green Steering Group notes 26th May 23

Posted 27.06.23

Enhancing Our Village Green Together Through Citizen Science!

Newstead's First Citizen Science Project

We are thrilled to announce that, after successfully raising funds to secure the new village green, the Newstead Village Community Trust (NVCT) is now eager to embark on the next phase: improving this space for the enjoyment of residents and visitors alike.

Our first crucial step is to survey the landscape, identifying its existing assets and determining how we can enhance them. A great starting point for this endeavour is conducting a comprehensive plant and wildlife survey. We invite all local Newstead residents to participate in this initiative. By setting aside habitats, food, water, and medicine for both new and existing wildlife, we can more easily secure funds for further planting efforts.

Lisa Laurie, a new resident of Newstead and a trained herbalist from the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, is launching in collaboration with NVCT a “Bioblitz” project aimed at recording all species found in and around the village green over the next 12 months. All data collected will be compiled in one central location, accessible at

What is a Bioblitz?

A Bioblitz is an exciting citizen science event where teams of volunteers come together to discover and identify as many species of plants, animals, fungi, and other organisms as possible. Whether you spot an intriguing insect, a beautiful wildflower, or hear a melodious birdsong, we encourage you to take photos or record sounds and upload them to our project. Every piece of information contributes to uncovering the incredible stories of the living beings that surround us.

The NVCT Bioblitz will run for an entire year, allowing us to capture a comprehensive snapshot of the biodiversity in and around our village green space. This comprehensive data will enable us to make necessary improvements, safeguard existing species crucial to wildlife, and introduce new species to encourage diverse habitats, food sources, and medicinal resources.

How Can You Take Part?

If you would like to be a part of this exciting project, we invite you to join us for the project launch on Sat 29th July between 11-12pm on the new Village Green. During this brief introduction, we will provide an overview of the project and demonstrate how residents can start recording using the free app iNaturalist.

To get started, simply:

1.  Download the iNaturalist app

2.  Set up a free account before launch day

3.  Search for Newstead Village Green Bioblitz under “projects”

4.  Click “join” to ensure your data is uploaded to our account.

5.  Bring your fully charged phone with you to the Bioblitz

You are now ready to embark on this fascinating journey of discovery and conservation!

Together, let's create a vibrant and thriving environment for our community!

Search:          iNaturalist on your mobile app store
Visit & Join:
Launch:          Sat 29th July 11-12pm @ Newstead Village Green
More info:

Posted 21.5.2023


Although the Green is a small plot of land, with some TLC it has the potential to become an even more valuable asset to our community, making even better use of the land and complementing our Village Hall which is lacking outdoor space. The consultation sessions over the Summer generated a whole host of ideas as to how to best make use of the Village Green and beyond. These ideas included improved seating, picnic benches, wildflower and herb planting and siting a gathering shelter for residents and visitors.

Our consultation highlighted that the rich heritage, history and culture of Newstead is not always evident to those who visit and pass through the Village. Ownership of the Green opens up opportunities to collaborate with likeminded partner organisations to highlight some of Newstead’s well kept secrets such as our unique sundials, stonemason’s marks on our walls, the site of the first Masonic Lodge in Scotland as well as, of course, Trimontium, at one point the most northerly Roman settlement in the whole Roman Empire.

Residents were keen that plans are mindful of any environmental impact and of the potential risk of over-development. NVCT take this responsibility seriously and aim to ensure that the development of the Green is a collaborative process which results in a space the whole community can benefit from for generations to come. If you would like to be involved in developing these ideas we are looking for volunteers who can contribute skills, expertise and a little time. Please email or Jane on 07751129843.

NVCT will also be planning a celebratory event, when the warmer weather arrives to mark this milestone, so watch this space. 

Posted 15.3.2023

The Village Green is now owned by our community!


Newstead Village Community Trust completed the purchase of the land on 24th February after a lengthy fundraising campaign.

Our Village Green came under threat of development when the owners were granted planning permission to build a four bedroomed house on the land during lockdown in 2020. During the Pandemic the value of outdoor meeting space came to the fore, and having been used as a community amenity space for many years with the permission of the landowners, the community were galvanized into action to try to save the Green. During NVCT’s consultation to develop our Community Action Plan, saving this greenspace was supported by 97.3% of respondents to the survey.

Three years later, the sheer determination and many hours of work by volunteers from our community has paid off. Thanks to the generosity of donors to our fundraising campaigns and a sizeable grant from the Scottish Land Fund we have been able to save the Green from development and safeguard it for the future benefit of the community. It just shows what can be achieved when a community works together, even if the odds are stacked against us.