Due to its extraordinary level of preservation Stobs Camp, approximately 4 miles south of Hawick in the Scottish Borders, is an internationally important First World War site. It was an arena for Scotland’s preparation for war and the subsequent handling of First World War prisoners, both civilian and military.
Although Stobs’ military connections continued up until the early 1960s the focus of the Stobs Camp Project is the period prior to, and during, the First World War. This three-and-a-half year community-focused project aims to better understand Stobs Camp and the role it played, to value, share and commemorate Stobs and the people connected to it and to protect the camp for future generations.
Led by Archaeology Scotland the team works with many organisations, groups and individuals including Historic Environment Scotland, Hawick Archaeological Society, Hawick Callants Club, Borders Family History Society, Live Borders, Scottish Borders Council Archaeological Services, Project Hawick, local Borders schools and the local landowners.
The project is currently surveying the physical remains at Stobs for the local and national historical record and exploring the human stories of the soldiers who trained at the camp and the civilian and military prisoners who were interned there. Equally important are the tales and memories of local people whose antecendents worked at, or were connected to, the camp during these vital years. Oral reminiscence and genealogical research play a key role in preserving its social history.
Volunteers from all across the Scottish Borders, the UK, and Europe are helping to build a picture of what life was like at the camp by researching the archives, newspapers, regimental records and family histories. With passion and dedication volunteers have begun tracing the huts sold off in the 1920s and the late 1950s, joined archaeological digs and have conducted site surveys. At the end of 2017 over 2,270 volunteer hours had been recorded.
Archaeology Scotland continues to inspire people to discover and explore Stobs Camp and regularly conducts educational workshops and training sessions for volunteers. It shares its findings through a dedicated website (www.stobscamp.org), social media, walks, talks, events, performances, exhibitions and conferences. These findings will also help provide evidence to protect Stobs Camp for the future.
The project has been funded by the following bodies: