Another of the 1950s Ham Estate streets named after a famous Abbey location Jedburgh Crescent owes its nominal identity to one of Scotland’s most popular and frequently visited Abbeys, its tourist rating putting it in the same league as Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle and Skara Brae on Orkney.
Boasting a number of remarkably complete twelfth and thirteenth century buildings, the Abbey’s design was in the tradition of many of Europe’s great early medieval churches and was founded by David I in 1138 for an order of Augustinian canons. Although not used as an Abbey since the Reformation it nevertheless served the local community as a church until 1875, after which time it fell into disuse.
Few would doubtless then have imagined it would have a prominent role to play in later life as a visitor attraction.
The name itself, incidentally comes from the river Ged and the neighbouring Jed Water. The second element in the name appears originally (in 800AD) to have been recorded as Gedwearde or “Ged worth” giving us the enclosure by the River Ged. In turn Ged is probably of Celtic origin meaning “winding”.