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Cairnbank House & Garden Apartment

Duns, Scottish Borders

An impressive five bedroom Georgian house with an additional two bedroom Garden Apartment set in lush gardens and grounds on the edge of the vibrant market town of Duns.

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An impressive five bedroom Georgian house with an additional two bedroom Garden Apartment set in lush gardens and grounds on the edge of the vibrant market town of Duns.

Georgian splendour meets rural charm in this magnificent property set in rolling Borders countryside

You won’t forget your first glimpse of Cairnbank House, as you follow a leafy driveway past ancient stone gate pillars, the Old Stables and Coach House before crunching up the gravel drive to this splendid Georgian property. Set in 8.2 acres of lush gardens and grounds, which lead out onto rolling countryside dotted with horses and goats, Cairnbank House is a textbook example of symmetrical Georgian beauty: wide curved steps lead up to the front door, which is flanked by elegant arched windows. The house’s generous side wings, with their voluptuous bay windows, were added to the original house in 1855 yet blend in quite seamlessly.

Rumoured to have hosted Rabbie Burns, Cairnbank House blends quintessentially Georgian grand arched hallways, intricate cornicing and towering sash windows with a truly bucolic setting. Ideally suited for an extended family or group of friends, the house has been sensitively renovated to bring out its many period features and style.

The sophisticated drawing room is flooded with light from the large bay window overlooking the Cheviot Hills and a pair of soaring 14-pane sash windows flanking the fireplace. Tastefully decorated in delicate grey-blue tones, it features a grand piano for those inspired to tinkle the ivories. There’s also a cosy sitting room overlooking the rear garden and paddock: daubed in midnight blue paint and decorated with burnt orange sofas and vintage Scottish tourism prints, it has the sultry feel of an indulgent gentleman’s club.

The spacious country kitchen features a sunny dining area for breakfasts and informal meals but you can’t beat the dining room for more special meals. Boasting sweeping views from its bay window, a roaring fire and a table large enough for 12 guests, it sets the scene for memorable occasions.

Follow a sweeping staircase from the entrance hall upstairs to discover three generous ensuite double bedrooms. Featuring original wooden shutters and fireplaces, each bedroom offers unbroken views of the surrounding gardens and grounds. The master bedroom boasts an impressive bathroom with a roll-top bath and shower as well as a large dressing room, which would also be suitable for a child's travel cot. The top floor of the house reveals two further attic bedrooms and WC under sloping (or coombed, to use the Scots word) ceilings.

With such a wonderful house to call your own, as well as expansive gardens and grounds in which to potter and play, you’re unlikely to wish to venture far from home. However, for all its tranquil sense of rural isolation, Cairnbank House is conveniently located on the outskirts of the bustling market town of Duns and just 20 minutes’ drive from the historic coastal city of Berwick-upon-Tweed.

Finally, the Garden Apartment sits on the lower ground floor and can be accessed from the main house to accommodate larger parties or those seeking some independence from the main group. This comprises an open-plan living, dining and kitchen space, two double bedrooms, and a shared bathroom.

Property details

Ground Floor

Access into a large hall with ground floor reception rooms divided by a central staircase.

The ground floor accommodation comprises:

Drawing room with two large sofas and a wood burning stove. Blüthner piano. Two armchairs positioned in front of the large bay window afford far-reaching views over farmland towards the Cheviot Hills and coast.

Sitting room with two double sofas, armchair, Smart TV and wood burning stove.

Kitchen with Brittania range cooker with five burner hob and double oven, slimline dishwasher, large fridge/freezer (with pull-out freezer drawers), Roberts radio. Informal dining space with bench seating and chairs for up to 10. There is a full size dishwasher, washing machine and separate dryer in the utility room to the rear of the formal dining room.

Formal dining room with large dining table and seating for 12 guests. Open fire. Sonos sound system. There is an additional table in the bay window which could be utilised for extra dining space if required using chairs from the kitchen.

Small utility / boot room sits to the rear of the dining room with Belfast sink, WC, full-size dishwasher, washing machine and separate dryer.

First Floor

Bedroom one - front facing master bedroom with super king bed, side tables, chest of drawers, decorative fireplace. Five steps lead up to a separate dressing room with plenty of wardrobe space. This is also an ideal space to place a travel cot for families with young children.

En suite bathroom with roll top bath, large shower with rainforest head and separate mixer, heated towel rail and WC.

Bedroom two - front facing room with king size bed, side tables, armchair, and dressing table. Five steps lead to an upper level with an in-built cupboard with hanging space which leads to the en suite bathroom.

En suite bathroom with large shower, heated towel rail, basin and WC.

Bedroom three - looks over the rear garden and paddock with double bed, side tables, decorative fireplace. Five steps lead up to an upper level with in-built cupboard with hanging space which leads to the en suite bathroom.

En suite bathroom - bath with shower over, heated towel rail, basin and WC.

The floor also benefits from a family bathroom with bath and shower over (rainforest head and separate mixer) basin, heated towel rail and WC. This serves the two attic rooms on the upper floor.

Second Floor

Important - Please note that the second floor (the attic level) is limited to restricted ceiling heights of 6ft. throughout. Please contact us if you have any concerns.

Bedroom four with double bed, side table, chest of drawers, window seat.

WC with basin.

Bedroom five with single bed with pull-out which converts to a double, chest of drawers, window seat. Please note that this room is suitable for up to two children only.

Garden Apartment

The garden apartment sits on the lower ground floor of Cairnbank House (east side) and is accessed from the main house but also has its own private rear access. This comprises:

Open-plan living, dining and kitchen area:

Kitchen with electric oven, induction hob, slimline dishwasher, fridge (no icebox). Dining area for four.

Living area with large sofa, Smart TV.

Bathroom with bath and shower over, basin and WC.

Bedroom one with king size bed, side tables, two chests of drawers, TV with Freeview.

Bedroom two with super king bed with zip and link option which can be converted to a twin. Side tables, wardrobe space with hanging rail, chest of drawers.

If you don't require as many bedrooms, there is a low occupancy option to book Cairnbank House (without access to the garden apartment) as a sleeps 8 property.


The property benefits from an extensive garden with far-reaching views to the front of the property, with garden furniture and garden recliners. Please note this is not enclosed.

To the rear of the property is a lawned garden with a children's play frame with chute and swings, and a trampoline. This extends into a large rear paddock with football goalposts. This area is ideal for children and dogs and is enclosed with three bar post and rail fencing.

Six burner gas barbecue available for guest use. Guests are responsible for the cleaning prior to departure.


There is parking to the rear, with parking for two additional cars to the front of the property at the top of the access drive. Parking on the gravelled courtyard directly in front of the property is not allowed.


For safety reasons, we do not permit electric vehicle or hybrid car charging at this property. If you’re travelling by EV, discover your nearest electric vehicle charging point here.

Babies & Children

A travel cot and highchair are available on request.


One well behaved dog is welcome. A second may be considered on request. Dogs must always enter the property via the rear door into the utility / boot room and dried off completely before entering the rest of the house. Dogs are not permitted in the drawing room, on the furniture, upstairs, or in the bedrooms.

It is important to note that the area around the house is farmland with livestock, horses and goats therefore dogs must be closely supervised and kept under control at all times.

Guest amenities

Bed linen and towels are provided for guests, along with hand soaps and bath/shower wash. Hairdryers are provided in the principal bedrooms. Duvets are hypo-allergenic while pillows are a combination of feather and hypo.

Wi-Fi & Mobile Coverage

Fibre broadband is available. Mobile reception is generally good.


Gas central heating throughout. There is an open fire in the dining room, and wood burning stoves in the drawing room and sitting room with an initial supply of logs.

Guest Privacy

Important - there is a Coach House property which sits adjacent to Cairnbank House and a separate apartment on the lower ground floor of Cairnbank House (west side), both of which are tenanted properties. The residents are respectful of guest privacy but please contact us should you wish to discuss further or have any concerns prior to booking.


Scottish short-term lets licence number: Pending

The current EPC rating for this property will be available soon.


The house is in the charming market town of Duns, which offers a good range of small-town shopping including a butchers, bakery, country and fishing store, a small Co-op supermarket, as well as a small selection of local gift and coffee shops. The Jim Clark Motorsport Museum has been recently revamped and is dedicated to the life and career of racing driver Jim Clark. The museum includes a unique collection of 100 trophies and memorabilia.

The historic towns of Berwick-upon-Tweed and Kelso sit 15 miles and 17 miles respectively from the property where you can relax and watch the world go by in one of the many cafes, delicatessens or tea rooms. Alternatively, head to the popular market town of Haddington (25 miles) where you will find an excellent selection of grocers, wine shops, florists and butchers sitting alongside charming gift, clothes shops and craft galleries.


There is excellent walking from the house from gentle ambles in the hills or along the river to serious hikes following Scotland's Coast to Coast walk, the Southern Upland Way which sits right on the doorstep. Keen cyclists can enjoy exploring quiet lanes and miles of forest tracks and there are a number of designated routes from low level meanders to high energy treks.

There is internationally-renowned fishing on the Tweed while productive fishing can be found on the River Whiteadder. For trout fishing and sailing, head to the nearby Whiteadder Reservoir nestled in an idyllic spot at the foot of the Lammermuir Hills. Alternatively, you will find some good sport and a friendly welcome at Coldingham Loch (15 miles). For shooting, a number of local estates offer high quality walked-up and driven shooting for grouse, pheasant and partridge over a wide range of habitats taking in the picturesque valleys and heather clad hillsides of the area.

For golfing, there is plenty of choice with a fantastic selection of eleven courses to choose from within a 22 mile radius, including the highly regarded 9 hole course at Duns, the sublime Roxburghe Championship Course in Kelso and the 18 hole cliff top links course at Eyemouth.

For the ultimate off-road experience, the Ronnie Dale Driving Centre in nearby Abbey St. Bathans (8 miles) offers 4x4 driving adventures for adults under the watchful eye of a personal instructor in 2000 acres of hill and forest terrain, as well as quad bike treks for adults and children around the 500 acre farm estate.

The stunning sandy beaches of the Berwickshire and North Northumberland coastline are just a stone’s throw away. Some of our favourite spots include the stunning beach at Bamburgh, miles of pristine sands popular for walking, beach rides or surfing, the magnificent views from the cliff tops at St Abbs Head, a designated Nature Reserve and the breeding ground for thousands of seabirds and seals; and the Holy Island of Lindisfarne, an overwhelmingly mystical place cut off from the mainland during high tide.

There’s an array of fabulous castles and historic houses to visit across the area. including majestic Floors Castle in Kelso and nearby Manderston a stunning example of an Edwardian country house set in 56 acres of formal gardens. Built with no expense spared, it features every modern convenience of that era, including sumptuous staterooms, opulent detailing, and an incredible silver staircase - the only one in the world. As the film location for a Channel 4 six-part series on life below stairs, its elaborate domestic quarters give a captivating insight into daily life in the Edwardian period.

C&C experiences

C&C experiences

We invite you to enjoy the most coveted and exclusive local experiences available in the North of England and the South of Scotland on your next Crabtree & Crabtree adventure.

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Children and families

Children and families

Here at Crabtree & Crabtree, we like to think we’ve pulled together some rather nifty ideas to keep tots to teens happy and entertained during your stay.

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Welcome to the realm of the king of fish, the mighty River Tweed. Every year thousands of Atlantic Salmon make their way up river, an annual odyssey that is one of nature's miracles.

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Historic houses and castles

Historic houses and castles

With more stately homes, castles and historic sites here than you can shake a proverbial stick at, visitors are quite simply spoilt for choice.

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Our region is home to outstanding scenery which boasts emerald forests, pristine lochs and rivers, heathery hillsides, sweeping moorlands as well as a picture perfect coastline.

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From the lush green uplands to shimmering sea, the area boasts a hugely diverse and enticing landscape that is perfect for exploring on foot. From gentle rambles to long-distance hikes, there are a vast array of trails and waymarked routes for newbie walkers or experienced alike.

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There are 40 golf courses in Northumberland, and another 21 in the Scottish Borders offering visitors an incredibly wide and varied range of golfing options.

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Cycling & mountain biking

Cycling & mountain biking

Whether you ride fast or slow, on-road or off-road, there is something uniquely special about enjoying some outdoor time on two wheels. Here in the region we have something for everyone from high-energy mountain biking blasts to gentle forest paths the whole family can enjoy.

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For sheer variety alone Northumberland and the Scottish Borders are irresistible to any gun.

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Ancestral history research

Ancestral history research

Crabtree & Crabtree know that tracing the history of your family can be a wonderful journey of discovery. Here are our top tips for starting your family tree.

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Cooks and chefs

Cooks and chefs

Make your stay hassle-free with your own personal cook

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Additional housekeeping

Additional housekeeping

Award yourself a real break and let us provide a pair (or more) of helping hands.

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Dog sitting

Dog sitting

Our experienced dog sitters will look after your furry friends whilst you are out exploring.

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Wine delivery

Wine delivery

Crabtree & Crabtree have teamed up with Corney & Barrow one of the longest established independent Wine Merchants in the UK to offer a bespoke service.

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Fresh flowers

Fresh flowers

Fresh cut flowers delivered to your holiday home.

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Holiday photography

Holiday photography

Family holidays, reunions and honeymoons kindle priceless moments that deserve preserving.

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Beauty and spa treatments

Beauty and spa treatments

Everyone needs some pampering, whatever the occasion.

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"We have just returned from a four generation family holiday in the wonderful Cairnbank House & Garden Apartment.  

The house is even more gorgeous than the photos indicated - so many fabulous spaces for us to congregate throughout the day to keep all age groups happy and the beautiful armchairs in the bay window to sit and enjoy the view throughout the day or with a gin & tonic in the evening.

Nothing was too much trouble and any queries we had were swiftly dealt with by Brian and Darren before we even arrived!

It’s a great location too - so many places to visit nearby.  Our best day out was a trip to Bamburgh Castle and the beach followed by fish and chips on the steps at Sea Houses.

Precious time spent with family and wonderful memories - Cairnbank was the perfect location, thanks to all.

Looking forward to our next holiday with Crabtree & Crabtree!"


Slack Party

"Just wanted to say that we had a lovely time and the house was everything we thought it would be and more.

It was a beautiful back drop to our family get together with friends for my wife’s big birthday!

The whole week was a success, including the weather and just the diversion we needed.

We are already planning our next trip up to the area."


Stockman Family

"We enjoyed our stay at Cairnbank, lovely spacious house, lots of accessible outside space which adults and children really appreciated."

Ms Lumsden

"We had a fantastic holiday discovering the area and the house, what a building! Everybody thoroughly enjoyed it."

Mr Sidebottom

"We’ve had a fantastic week at Cairnbank House, it was perfect for our family get together. It was just ideal for 9 adults and 5 children that were part of our group. It was very cosy and welcoming."

Petrie Family

"We are now back from Cairnbank, with wonderful memories of a great week. Our thanks to the owners for allowing us to share their stunning home. The house is beautiful and was just perfect for us. We spent days in and days out; enjoying the house, the coast, Edinburgh and the local countryside. A fabulous meal at Hoebridge, Gattonside was a highlight too. Thank you to everyone involved for making the trip so easy. Your friendly and efficient booking procedure & non-intrusive but helpful follow-up; the prompt and kind support provided onsite by the housekeeper and caretaker. The house was beautifully clean & tidy for us and proved a very comfortable & relaxing space for us all."

Hammond Family


Location Rural - in the town of Duns, Scottish Borders
  • One well behaved dog is welcome at a charge of £25.00. A second may be considered on request.
Arrival / Departure
  • Typical arrival day: Saturday, with flexibility during low season.
  • Arrival time: 4pm
  • Departure time: 10am
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enjoy the views from the comfort of the armchairs in the drawing bay window
The little things we love...
"Sipping sundowners and watching the sun gild the Cheviot Hills from the comfort of the pair of armchairs in the drawing room bay window."
David and Eleanor, owners of Cairnbank House
email us or give us a call on 01573 226711 for details.

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