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Minutes of a meeting of Directors held on Thursday 14th May 2020


Because of the coronavirus, this meeting was held remotely over a number of days leading up to 14th May 2020, but the matters contained therein have been agreed in writing by all twelve Directors.



Alasdair Swan (Chair); Steven Anderson; John Band; Paddy Crerar; 

Barry Fisher; Paul Ingram; Kenny Maule; Robin Hamilton; Eric Robertson;  

John Sim; Yvonne Wemyss; John Williams.



Quentin Dimmer 



1 Minutes of the previous meeting

The minutes of the meeting held on 9th April 2020 were approved.


2 Matters Arising

Matters completed –

  • Internal safety audit.
  • Safety Management System revised.
  • Storage project initiation document.
  • CCTV planning application re-submitted.
  • Toilet project is moving to warrant stage
  • Bellany painting
  • Letter to Alan Stewart
  • Coastal Communities Network has welcomed Dunbar as an associate member

Matters carried forward until the crisis eases –

  • 3T and 5 mph 
  • “Beware Falling Rocks” notice 
  • Carioca 
  • Cold Store drainage
  • Soup trailer application 
  • Painting of railings and bollards
  • Maintenance Bay costing


3 Casual vacancy:

There was a warm welcome to John Williams who has been co-opted onto the Board to replace Alison Fisher. Among his other interests, John is keen to promote the history of the harbour and its castle. 


4 Port Marine Safety Code

Incident Log Review

There were no major incidents to report in April.

With the Covid 19 lock-down there are no minor incidents to review this month. Some fishermen have tested positive for Covid 19. Harbour users have been reminded of the government guidelines, their legal obligations to keep their social distance, and to act with consideration for the other berth holders.

Leisure users are allowed to attend their boats in order to carry out essential and routine checks. At the moment leisure trips are not classified as daily exercise and are therefore contrary to government guidelines.

The harbourmaster will issue a notice to mariners, when the time comes, focusing on following the government guidelines, reducing the risk of emergency services needing to be mobilised, maintaining social distancing, staying in household units, the importance of weather forecasts, adequate fuel, main and emergency engine checks, equipment and vessel checks before putting to sea, and finally encouraging good seamanship, courtesy, patience and common sense towards other harbour users.

Risk Assessment Review

The following risks were assessed, and their impact on possible grounding or collision –

  1. Unexpected wind strength or direction
  2. Unexpected tidal conditions including swell

It was agreed that the existence of experienced skippers was an effective control that should be noted against these risks. There are very few skippers in Dunbar who do not understand these particular risks.

It was agreed that the likelihood of asset damage from these risks might be overstated and could be reduced (particularly as there have been few, if any, incidents from this cause over the last decade), but it was agreed that the intial assessment would remain unchanged as the conclusion, after controls had been taken into consideration, was considered to be correct.

Safety Management System

Version 24 was approved and will now be posted on the website

Log of Local Notices to Mariners

There is now a separate log of the Local NtMs on the Harbour Trust website, under the “Port Operations” tab



5 Finance

April report

  1. The deficit of £4,776 in the month of April was in line with expectations.
  2. Landings were almost non-existent and will continue to be until the fishing fleet can return to sea.
  3. The Mooring fee income was lost in its entirety, as the first half of the year’s fees have been credited to harbour users.
  4. Fuel sales were 85% down, resulting in further loss of income.
  5. Total income fell by 66% in the month and the loss would have been greater without the assistance of a Covid grant.
  6. The Covid grant of £10,000 will be spread over the first six months of the year to ease the pain of the loss of mooring fees, landings and fuel sales.
  7. These accounts do not include the ELC Partnership grant. £20,000 has been applied for (being the same figure as last year) but, as yet, no award has been made. Were this grant to be withdrawn, this amount of £20,000 would need to be added to the previous forecast of a £40,000 loss for the year.
  8. The credit control position remains satisfactory. Many harbour users have left their credit balance in their account, for which the Harbour Trust remains very grateful.


The adequacy of our current insurance cover will  be reviewed before the next meeting.








6 Dunbar Harbour Management Committee

No meeting was held this month because of the coronavirus lockdown.


Noise pollution: 

There was a complaint from harbour residents about the noise created by certain members of the fishing community at anti-social hours. This matter has been dealt with off-line by the harbourmaster and the Environmental Health Officer has been informed.

Railings and bollards:

Paint has been sourced and ordered so that there will be no delay in looking after the railings and the bollards once the lockdown is eased.

Navigation lights:

An order has been placed for the navigation lights to be replaced. These are in danger of becoming unsafe.

Mooring plates:

These have been made and are ready for installation to improve the safety of the mooring chains.


7 Projects


On hold

Harbour Bridge

All four corners of the bridge have been inspected. No movement was detected.

Quotes for Lifting  bridge more extensive repairs from Kgal audit awaited,

North Wall fence

Work to commence after lockdown


Awaiting planning permission

Harbour wall repairs

A grant application has been lodged with Marine Scotland.

Robin organised an inspection of the outer wall on 7th May. All the repairs done in Spring 2019 are looking good and a few further areas of undermining that now require underpinning plus some further sheared blocks on wall face were identified. These had been noted by Arch Henderson in their 2019 Condition Survey.


8 Harbour Improvement Plan


Contact has been made with Historic environment Scotland.

Contact has also been made with The Ridge.

The first stage is to analyse what the current problems are, and then to define the art of the possible, with a view to getting as much access to the castle as is possible within the safety laws.


Drain from the Cold Store:

Awaiting the end of the lockdown.



The consultants have been instructed to proceed to warrant stage.


North Wall steps

A solution is being sought for the masonry repairs needed to make these stairs safe.



Storage at the harbour

The Project initiation Document v2 has been circulated.

Stage 1 – The analysis stage has started and is planned to be completed by the time of the June Board Meeting. The harbourmaster is in charge of this stage.

Steven Anderson, supported by John Williams, Kenny Maule and Yvonne Wemyss will work this coming month  to help Quentin. The project plan has a milestone set for the next Board Meeting to consider the completeness and accuracy of the analysis. Without the analysis it was pointed out that the storage will expand to fit the additional space made available, solving none of the existing problems and creating extra expense for the Trust.

Leaders will be needed from the Board for Stage 2 – the Master Plan stage –  Stage  4 – the fundraising stage – and Stage 5 – the implementation stage.

The Communications plan was agreed and will now be actioned. It was considered important to engage with representatives from all user groups at the harbour during the first stage of the project.




Advertising and notice board

A group of Directors, led by John Band, will draft an advertising and promotion policy for the harbour, source and cost a solution, before seeking funding for it. The notice board may need to be replaced at the same time.


Wooden cannon for Dunbar Battery

The Battery may benefit from a cannon of the period. Kenny has made one one out of wood. In wood it will still be heavy and stable enough and with good paint (like the propellor's special paint) will ensure it survives kiddies' clambering.


10 Events

Sparkling Dunbar: Due to the recent Scottish Government announcements advising ‘it is likely to be some time before public gatherings will be possible’, Sparkling Dunbar Harbour Festival and other events to be held over the summer months by the Dunbar Harbour Trust have regretfully been cancelled.

Fishing Industry Festival: It is proposed to hold an event in 2021 that will celebrate the longstanding fishing industry within Dunbar Harbour. This event is in the early stages of planning. A collaborative approach is desired, with the local fishing community and relevant organisations, i.e. Historic Dunbar being active contributors. 


11  Date of next meeting – Thursday 11th June 6.45 p.m.