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About Shambellie House

New Abbey and Shambellie have been the home of the Stewart family for over four centuries. Shambellie House was built in 1856 by William Stewart and designed by the architect David Bryce. Though there were disagreements between architect and client, and the house was not built as originally imagined or on time, it is still a fine example of a Scottish Baronial style house.

The History

Explore a piece of history.

Find out more about the story of Shambellie House and the local area of New Abbey home of the Stewart family from the 15th century.


Our Courses

Here at Shambellie House we offer workshops and courses delivered by experienced tutors on a range of creative topics, be it arts, heritage or environmental. All courses benefit from the wonderful location and Shambellie’s retreat-like nature, with stunning views and glorious grounds and an abundance of flora and fauna which can’t fail to inspire.

We offer a range of courses to suit participants, from half to full day, on week-days and weekends, daytime and evening. Full day courses are catered for with deliciously tasty light lunches and fresh coffees and teas throughout the day.


About Our Tutors

Dumfries and Galloway has a wealth of creative talent which you have the opportunity to discover by joining a course at Shambellie House. Many of our tutors are local creatives, but we also draw skills from further afield to bring a diverse and exciting year-round programme of workshops, activities and events. We work with our tutors to evaluate the courses and content on offer and are proactive in implementing continuous improvement responding to participant feedback.

The Local Area

Shambellie House lies eight miles from Dumfries on the edge of the village of New Abbey. This pretty village holds a wealth of history including the ruined Sweetheart Abbey and the New Abbey Corn Mill. The Abbey was founded by Lady Devorgilla in the 13th century to commemorate the death of her husband John Balliol. On her death she was laid to rest next to her husband’s embalmed heart and the monks named the abbey in memory of her.

New Abbey Corn Mill was built by the Stewart family of Shambellie House in the 18th century, but it is thought there was a much earlier mill on the site linked to the Abbey and it is still known locally as ‘Monk’s Mill’. Both buildings are now in the care of Historic Scotland. The village has a general store, pub and a tearoom.

Prominent in the landscape is Criffel, a hill of only 569 metres in height, but dominating the Solway coastline. A short, steep ascent rewards you with stunning views of the Solway, its estuaries and on a clear day across to the Lake District. There are many other walks on offer, including the steps up to the Waterloo Monument. Built in 1810 it commemorates the British, Belgian and Prussian soldiers who gained the victory of Waterloo.

To the west of New Abbey is Beeswing and Loch Arthur, which is claimed to be the setting for the Arthurian story of the Lady of the Lake. It is home to the Loch Arthur Farm Shop and Café, proudly offering their own organic and locally produced foods. To the south is Kirkbean and the John Paul Jones Cottage Museum, the birthplace of the ‘Father’ of the U.S. Navy. Between New Abbey and Dumfries is Mabie Forest Park, with walking and mountain bike trails, along with quiet picnic areas and stunning viewpoints.

Dumfries and Galloway is an incredibly beautiful part of Scotland offering a fabulous diversity of landscapes, with coastlines of rocky shores and sandy beaches and acres of forest and green spaces. Across its breadth you will find something to interest all ages, from castles to museums, ancient monuments to historic towns. Wigtown is designated as Scotland’s National Book Town, Castle Douglas as a Food Town and Kirkcudbright as the Artists’ Town.

The Shambellie House Trust

Shambellie House was the home of the Scottish National Museum of Costume from 1977 to 2013. On closure of the Museum, the Shambellie House Trust was created to develop a sustainable future for the house and grounds. A registered charity, in 2019 it also became a Community Benefit Society. It is managed by a Board of Trustees and its objectives are:

  • To arrange for the buildings and grounds to be used for the advancement of arts, heritage and culture.
  • Providing facilities for the arts and providing heritage benefit to the community by preserving the listed building of Shambellie House (including any outbuildings or associated buildings and grounds).
  • To arrange for the buildings and grounds to be used for the advancement of education, in particular arts, culture and the environment.

Forthcoming Courses

Show All
Making a Tuffet
Fri 20th May 2022
A Quilting Show and Tell with Stuart Hillard
Fri 20th May 2022
My Very Useful Messenger Bag with Stuart Hillard
Sat 21st May 2022
Scrap Quilting with Stuart Hillard
Sun 22nd May 2022
Trapunto Knot Garden Embroidery
Mon 23rd May 2022
Ruler Quilting
Wed 25th May 2022
Free Motion Quilting
Thu 26th May 2022
Chain it Down Embroidery
Fri 27th May 2022
Spring Fling at Shambellie
Thu 2nd Jun 2022
Gel Printing: An Introduction into Monotype Printmaking, using a Gel Printing Plate
Sun 12th Jun 2022
Embroidery for Mindfulness Taster Session
Tue 14th Jun 2022
Come and Try the Harp Taster Session with Wendy Stewart
Wed 15th Jun 2022
Introduction to Digital Photography
Fri 17th Jun 2022
Scottish Harps with Karen Marshalsay
Fri 17th Jun 2022
Creating Strong Characters for Illustration, Animation and Film
Sat 18th Jun 2022
Introducing Machine Embroidery: Bird and Animal Portraits
Fri 24th Jun 2022
Nature Inspired Mixed Media Artist’s Book
Sat 25th Jun 2022
Automatic Drawing Taster Session
Thu 30th Jun 2022
Introduction to Animation
Sat 16th Jul 2022
Torn Paper Collage Taster Session
Tue 19th Jul 2022
Zen Drawing Taster Session
Thu 21st Jul 2022
Elements of Drawing
Sat 23rd Jul 2022
OBSERVE – PLAY – CREATE with Drawing
Sat 30th Jul 2022
Cyanotypes for Beginners
Tue 2nd Aug 2022
Family Tales
Sat 6th Aug 2022
Drawing Calm
Sat 13th Aug 2022
Mostly Ghostly presents… Stories at Shambellie
Thu 18th Aug 2022
Textile Jewellery: Suffolk Puffs
Fri 19th Aug 2022
Frottage and Collage Taster Session
Thu 25th Aug 2022
OBSERVE – PLAY – CREATE with Painting
Sun 28th Aug 2022
Print Nature Taster Session
Thu 15th Sep 2022
Stoicism and the Art of Living: Good, Bad and Indifferent
Sun 18th Sep 2022
Botanical Illustration
Thu 22nd Sep 2022
Changing Minds around the World Quilting Exhibition
Fri 23rd Sep 2022
Writing Ghost Stories
Sat 22nd Oct 2022
Autumnal Wreath Making Workshop
Sat 29th Oct 2022
Stoicism and the Art of Living: What Is In Our Power
Sun 13th Nov 2022
Christmas Wreath Making Workshop
Sat 10th Dec 2022
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