Between Britain

Walking the History of England and Scotland

Alistair Moffat

Between Britain by Alistair Moffat (Hardback ISBN 9781838854386) book cover

Available as Hardback, eBook

A walking tour of the border region where England and Scotland meet by the award-winning Scottish writer, meditating on the conflict and union of their relationship through history and in the future

The border between Scotland and England is rich in history. It has been the site of battles, treaties, castles and crossroads. It is also a place where both countries display their nationalism: Saltires flying in the north, the Cross of St George to the south. But it can also be a lens through which to look at the changing history and identities of these two countries.

Alistair Moffat is a life-long borderer and the ideal guide on this one-hundred-mile journey. We begin just north of the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed. Already the battlelines have been drawn – the town having been grabbed by the English from Berwickshire in 1482 and never given back. From here we will head west as our tour travels backwards and forwards through history. In all, we will walk through eight centuries before we reach our journey’s end at the mouth of the River Sark.

Between Britain is a history book, a travelogue, a personal reminiscence and a gently prodding examination of national identity. But above all it is a celebration of a place and the people who live there.

“Moffat is a great storyteller and his stories are rich, full of interest. One of the many merits of this fascinating book is that it invites us to think about who we are and what our history means or might mean to us. It is also a reflection on what it has meant and may mean in the future”

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“As admirable in its simplicity as it is daunting in its complexity … Moffat peers into the farther corners of history as he criss-crosses the border. There he is able to coax other, less well-familiar characters to step out of the shadows”

“A study in nationalism … A journey of 100 miles but one that time travel[s] through 800 years of complex history”
sunday Post

”Praise for Alistair Moffat: [To the Island of Tides] is often beautifully evocative of places, the past and the landscape … compelling and revealing”
the Times

“Extraordinary … There is a powerful, natural beauty in Moffat’s writing”

Alistair Moffat

Alistair Moffat was born in Kelso, Scotland in 1950. He is an award-winning writer, historian and Director of Programmes at Scottish Television, former Director of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and former Rector of the University of St Andrews. He is the founder of Borders Book Festival and Co-Chairman of The Great Tapestry of Scotland, and the author of The Secret History of Here: A Year in the Valley, The Hidden Ways: Scotland’s Forgotten Roads and To the Island of Tides: A Journey to Lindisfarne.