Dumfries and Galloway make up the south-western tip of Scotland, a border area rich in turbulent history and historic remains.
The country around Dumfries is a pleasant plain, fertile and inviting, regularly raided by reivers and subject to savage English reprisals. It was the favoured route for Edward I's invasions of Scotland and even the Romans found it prudent to keep a tactical presence in the area.
Go further west, however, and you are in rugged hill country with limitless forests guarded by marauding midges. The roads are almost deserted, the people are friendly, the scenery is spectacular and if ever there was a place to relax and unwind, this is it. (There's not much internet and even mobile phones are flakey!)
Back in the 1600s, however, these wild places were the refuge of implacable enemies of the established order, fierce Covenanters who took up arms against the state and assassinated hated bishops. When two "terrorist sympathisers" were arrested in Wigtown, it seemed obvious that there was only one thing to do with them.