Galashiels, Scotland, Town Website
home | news | business | organisations | history | braw lads

Town Trail

Public Library (9)

The Public Library replaced an earlier subscription library which had been founded in 1797. Everyone wishing to use the library had to pay an annual subscription and each time they went into the building an entrance fee was charged. Subscribers reduced in numbers over time and the library closed in 1859. A free public library was first suggested in 1871 and it was opened on Lawyers' Brae in 1873. Due to demand for books, the building was extended in 1890. Both the original reading rooms and the extension were built by public subscription. Notice the carving of the words 'Free Library' over the central window.

The open area in front of the Library and Burgh Buildings is called Cornmill Square and was built on the site of the town's corn mill. In the centre is a fountain built in 1913, to a design by Sir Robert Lorimer, over the lade system which powered the mill and those of the woollen mills towards Netherdale. The water system is partially concealed by the balustrade but is well worth looking into.

Cross over Cornmill Square and, with the War Memorial on your right, head along Market Street. The landscaped open area on the left is called Market Square.

Next: Market Square

The Public Library

The Fountain
Historical Background
Where to Start
(1) Scott Park
(2) Old Gala House
(3) Old Parish & St Paul's Church
(4a) The Tolbooth and Cloth Hall
(4b) The Mercat Cross
(5) Tea Street
(6) Old Burial Ground
(7) St Peter's Episcopal Church & School
(8) Burgh Buildings
(9) Public Library
(10) Market Square
(11) Church of Our Lady & St Andrew
(12) Post Office
(13) Former Co-op Building
(14) Glasite Chapel
(15) Burgh School
(16) Bank Street Gardens
(17) Volunteer Hall
Site by Bordernet in the Scottish Borders  |   legal