Issue 110 - Winter

Editor and proprietor, Pauline Jaffray, has been at the helm for the production and

publication of every single issue of East Lothian Life magazine for thirty years. As Pauline was making her usual preparations for this issue, she was taken ill and ended up in hospital for several weeks.

Sudden ill health is one of the perils of running a business singlehanded and especially a magazine where tight deadlines must be met. There was little doubt among a few of us closely involved with the magazine that the Winter Issue of East Lothian Life would appear as usual – and here it is! It is still sprinkled with Pauline’s magic, but with less of her input and so we hope regular readers will overlook any changes or omissions.

The short hours of sunlight still allow plenty of opportunity for exploring our beautiful countryside, whether on foot, two wheels or four. Take a walk with Allen Skinner and Muddy Boots through Butterdean Wood, near Gladsmuir, or brace yourself against the icy cold sea breezes and stride out along one of the county’s beautiful beaches – Longniddry, Aberlady, Tyninghame or beyond Dunbar – you are spoilt for choice.

There are other ways to keep fit over the winter months, indoors or outdoors. If you are a sporty type you could join one of the many clubs which operate in the county’s excellent sports centres. Jennifer Sharp has written about the inspiration behind the Bass Rocketeers Netball Club in Bouncing High and Aidan Taylor gives a flavour of the devotion to rugby in the county and the development of the sport for both girls and boys in Over the Line.

Gardening can get you outside during the winter. Horticulturist, Gerry Conlon enthuses about the pleasures of clearing dead wood and creating spaces for next

year’s planting, even during the coldest days. He reminds us in his article Deep,

Dark Winter Gardening that gardeners ‘catch every moment of daylight’.

Ancient Luffness, near Aberlady, is featured as the East Lothian Home in this

issue. Once a great medieval castle, it has been the home of the same family for the past 300 years. You can find out about its wonderful history and much more besides in the following pages.

Enjoy reading your copy of East Lothian Life this winter – and let’s look forward

to a bright Spring and Pauline back at her desk, restored to good health!

Ailsa Fortune

(For Pauline)

Front cover: Luffness Tower, Aberlady, by John Boak, acrylic on canvas. (


06 East Lothian Homes - Luffness
10 East Lothian History - Luffness Golf Club
13 Play Chess - Chess Connections
14 East Lothian Antiques - Nights in Armoire
16 Winter Interiors - Winter Warmers
19 Play Bridge - Playing It Safe
20 Property - East Lothian property market still punching above its weight
26 East Lothian Gardening - Deep Dark Winter Gardening is good for you!
30 East Lothian Gardening - Trees in a changing climate
34 Plants That Changed Our Lives - Mistletoe
36 Muddy Boots 72 - Butterdean Wood
39 Money Matters - Money – why it’s good to talk
40 The Lothians and Border Horse - The 1st Regiment at War, 1939-45
44 Historic East Lothian - The Royal Navy Press Gangs
46 East Lothian Biodiversity - Winter Survival
48 Burns and Bikes - Burns would have been a Biker
50 Historic East Lothian - Auld Kirk Salt Pan Gareth Jones
52 Health and Fitness - Bouncing High, The Bass Rocketeers Netball Club
54 Sporting East Lothian - Over the Line
56 East Lothian Music - Siancio Singers
58 Concorde – The Great Commercial Supersonic Experiment
61 Figuratively Speaking - Building Bridges not Walls
62 Art Matters - Releasing Creativity
64 Farming - Papple Steading - A Homage to the Scottish Agricultural Revolution
67 Cooking is Fun
70 Wine Cellars - The Rich List
72 East Lothian Leisure - Plodding
74 East Lothian History - Haddington’s Czech War Hero
76 East Lothian Life Classified
78 News Views and Reviews
80 Travel & Explore - Australia-bound with a Clipper
82 East Lothian Motoring - Mind the Gap