Local history for free at Soutra

The medieval hospital Soutra Aisle and Dr Brian Moffat.

The medieval hospital Soutra Aisle and Dr Brian Moffat.

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The once powerful medieval hospital at Soutra Aisle will open its doors this Easter weekend offering visitors a trip back in time.

Soutra Aisle director Dr Brian Moffat is urging people to get along to their open days on Saturday, Sunday and Monday at 2pm, which have been held every Easter since 1986 when the ancient site re-opened as a visitor attraction.

And with this year being the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn, Brian will tell the story of when the English army stayed at Soutra Aisle on route to the historic event.

He said: “The fact that 35,000 troops were accommodated here tells you something about how big this place was.

“Strictly speaking the English army spent more time here than at Bannockburn.

“The army would quite simply move in and everybody here would move out. Soutra was very well known to the English army, it was a big deal at the time.”

Read more in this week’s Midlothian Advertiser, out now.