Issue 102 - Winter

East Lothian Life

Issue 102 - Winter 2017

There is nothing quite like the raw beauty of the East Lothian landscape wrapped in its winter cloak to refresh the spirit and put a spring in your step. Winter is the season that lets you see places in a new light and offers new experiences that you just can't enjoy at any other time of year. Smell the air, it's crisp and fresh. In the villages and towns the lights sparkle, stars shine and the chill in the air makes your cheeks glow and nose tingle.

Muddy Boots, with Allen Skinner experienced all this on a clear, crisp day exploring the delights of Humbie and if there is one thing that will warm you up in winter, after an invigorating walk, it's a tot of whisky, the country's national drink. Michael Atkinson delves into a brief history of ‘scotch’, whilst Geoffrey Williams in his Wine Cellars article asks which is better; bottles under cork, or bottles under screw cap? Our Cooking is Fun…section includes a variety of healthy winter recipes, all using fresh local produce, which is readily available throughout East Lothian, whether at our monthly Haddington Farmers’ Market or in our greengrocers and farm shops.

No one is more in touch with our changing seasons than local artist Darren Woodhead who works purely outside and how the changing seasons enrich our stunning landscape. Hill farmer David Morrison, who’s farming year kicks off in November, is also acutely aware of his beautiful surroundings and the challenges each season brings. Winter is a magical time and our wildlife from our wee cowering timorous beastie, who Stuart Macpherson has a secret fondness for, to our local mountain hares whose home in the Lammermuirs is a truly wild, natural place and during the winter months its unique character comes to life with dramatic effect.

Kick back, put your feet up and enjoy East Lothian Life, because like our county, it will contain something of interest to you. Just look at the great variety of fascinating content, stunning photographs and articles all covering faces, places, pastimes and pursuits, which make up this wonderful county of ours.

Tweet us @eastlothianlife - - your thoughts.

Front Cover: A stunning painting of a male Kingfisher by Darren Woodhead.

Beloved Scotland of the winter and the hills! 'Tis little that thou'lt get from them, but they will make thee hard and brave!’ – Neil Munro


06 East Lothian Homes
10 East Lothian Care & Repair
16 East Lothian Property
38 Making a Fortune in the 19th century
46 East Lothian Life Profile – Catriona Matthew
50 Belhaven Hill School, Form 6
55 So what makes our young readers tick?
76 News & Views & Book Reviews
27 Play Chess
31 Play Bridge
42 Passchendaele 1917
44 The story of St Andrew and the Saltire
48 East Lothian Railways of the past – the Gifford and Garvald line
52 Lothians and Borders Yeomanry
56 Scotland’s Early Silver
57 Art Matters with Darren Woodhead
60 Cooking is fun…
64 Wine Cellars
66 A brief history of Scotch
71 The Snowbound Travellers
12 Winter Interiors
14 East Lothian Antiques
20 East Lothian Gardening
24 Plants that changed our lives
28 Muddy Boots64 – Around Humbie
32 East Lothian Biodiversity – Mooselini
35 Figuratively Speaking with Lyle Crawford
36 Nature Detectives our local mountain hares
68 Farming East Lothian – Hill sheep farmers
72 Tilting – an equestrian sport for all
74 Fisherrow Yacht Club Diamond Jubilee: A Reflection
77 Through the lens
80 Travel & Explore – Guernsey
82 East Lothian Life Motoring
41 Subscribe to East Lothian Life
78 East Lothian Life Classified