There is a lot happening in Dunbar Harbour, so we will keep you informed with our news articles and newsletter. Subscribe to our newsletter on the right of this article and come back to this news page often to read more. If you have news related to Dunbar Harbour then please send us a message using the form at the bottom and we will publish it here.


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Interview with Romie Blair (Nessie), inspiration and taskmaster of Dunbar Against Litter.

Founded by Nessie, DAL is a group of like-minded people who would like to see Dunbar as litter-free as possible. DAL works with East Lothian Council, Zero Waste Dunbar, and Viridor as well as businesses and individuals in Dunbar who work at disposing of litter responsibly. Nessie is also a West Barns Community councillor.

“We are all volunteers, picking up litter from our streets, beaches, countryside and roadside and disposing of it in a responsible manner. We also want to spread the word and get people on board. You can volunteer! We have a project of Adopting-a-street - asking people to help clean up an area of the town. We can assist you by supplying bags and we hope to be able to supply pick-up sticks and hi-vis vests where funds allow. We can also help by advising where you can drop off bags that will be collected regularly. Additionally, we have litter bins in areas that the Council cannot reach. These bins are emptied regularly by our volunteers.”

Nessie, where were you born?
Dunbar, born and bred, went to Dunbar schools, studied and then returned to Dunbar in the 80s.
Do you have children? 
Yes, three sons. I’m now retired and busier than ever.
Is Nessie your real name? 
I was nicknamed Nessie when I lived in London after studying at Charing Cross School of Window Dressing. 
How many ‘helpers’ are on your team?
We have about 60 helpers who litter pick from West Barns to Torness. Oh, and there’s 990 supporters on our FB page. We get lots of compliments from the public.
Does it keep you all fit?
Yes! We even have helpers on mobility scooters who zoom around gathering litter. Also it helps with mental health issues to be outside doing something useful for everybody.
Everyone seems to regard you as a character, how could that possibly be? 
Perhaps because I get things done! I’ve had many jobs including music promoter, running Granny Radge Promos, community charities, even music events in a strip club with pole dancers. I’m thinking of doing a future event: “Live at the Lavvies” near the toilets in front of the swimming pool.
Do you like visiting the Harbour, even if it’s for litter picking? 
Yes, I love our harbour but there’s some in our town who don’t know about the harbour!
Are you sometimes an unpaid tourist guide?
Yes, visitors ask questions and fall into interesting chats with us. 
Are gulls the culprits for distributing litter?
Well, sometimes, but people overstuff bins with chip boxes and pizza boxes so the gulls easily pull it all out, then the wind spreads it. Horrible and unhealthy.
Has Covid 19 affected your work? 
Not really, we work separately outside in the fresh air, ventilation is good. 
What are you planning for 2021? 
First Aid courses and we hope to start a children's club once a fortnight to see how it goes.
How can people donate to your good works?
By direct debit. Bank: Dunbar Against Litter, 80-22-60, a/c 18280269, even £1/month is fine,  or give us a cheque, or there’s collection tins in the Garden Centre, and lots of people help us, Douglas Reid’s garage (01368 863096) does our van MOT for free. Thanks lads! 
Plus we’ll soon be a charity once the paperwork’s complete.
Any other help needed?
a) We need a small space to take out litter-picks to enable us to recycle more 
b) Know any clever techie who could connect up our wildlife cameras, please?
“Thank you, Nessie, and good luck for 2021.”
Her FB page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/DunbarAgainstLitter/
Photo from DAL's FB page.
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Boat owners, leisure and professional, are advised by HMRC to carry evidence of VAT-status onboard their vessels ‘at all times’ in case of checks by customs officials, since the end of the Brexit transition on 31 December 2020. This applies to both commercial and leisure craft.

HMRC is advising owners to put together evidence of VAT-status, such as documentation of VAT paid, and evidence of where their yacht was at the end of the transition period. This is the case for all third countries.

They will also need to keep careful records about where their yacht has been subsequently, such as mooring receipts, so there is a record trail of evidence for VAT-status in case they are asked by officials. All documentation should be brought to and from the boat, rather than left aboard, due to the ‘damp nature’ of vessels.


Photo by Kenny Maule

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The Dunbar Harbour Trust held an informal event on Thurs 28th Jan, to share our ‘What If...’ aspirations. The evening was a success (derived from positive feedback). Sustaining Dunbar were facilitating the event and had many enquiries from people who were unable to attend, so this memorable event has now been published on Sustaining Dunbar’s website. 

Click here for full details, including presentations:--- 


Achievements during 2020 included:

  • Erection of a permanent gate at the North Wall to prevent people from walking along the north side during over-topping.
  • Installation of the first part of the barrier to prevent the forklift truck falling into Victoria Harbour.
  • Installation of AIS repeater
  • Upgrading of leading lights
  • Introduction of full CCTV coverage
  • Introduction of a new reporting system
  • A review of three risks at every Board Meeting
  • Certification and inspection records for harbour equipment improved.
  • Safety guidance for leisure users issued
  • Checks on qualifications of new applicants introduced
  • Local contractor appointed to inspect lifting gear.
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The defibrillator, which was on the Sailing Club wall, disappeared from its green box on 25th August. The appropriate department is now aware.

If anyone has any information, please contact:-- Harbour Master (07958 754858, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

or the RNLI (01368 863966, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

photo by Kenny Maule


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We all like to spot phenomena in Dunbar's big sky. Crepuscular rays or "God's rays" are sunbeams that originate when the sun is below the horizon, during twilight hours, dawn or dusk. Crepuscular rays, noticeable when the contrast between light and dark is most obvious, are shafts of light seen just after sunset or before sunrise, radiating from the position of the sun below the horizon. They form when the sun is behind an irregularly-shaped cloud or mountain which lets the rays of the sun pass through in bands.. 

Crepuscular comes from the Latin word "crepusculum", meaning twilight.
photo by Kenny Maule
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The Bridge to Nowhere  

A Triptych (three panels side-by-side) by an excellent 'visual storyteller', many thanks to Owen MacDonald.

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As Scotland emerges from the Lockdown, Dunbar Coastal Rowing Club are beginning to prepare to return to the water. We are cleaning our skiffs, risk assessing, putting Covid measures in place to keep us all safe, and airing our new beach shelter.


We hope to be back out on the water, rowing for pleasure, in the near future. If this looks like fun and you would like to join us, we would be happy to hear from you. We will gladly take your details and when the time is right we will contact you and offer a Taster session where you can come out on the water with us and decide if you would like to be part of the Club.  



Contact: secretary@dunbarcoastalrowing.org.uk

photo 1: credit Christine Mincher, photo 2: credit Rosie Patrick.

Click <<READ MORE>> for photo 2, the new beach shelter

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Due to recent social distancing, Core Dunbar temporarily used the Battery (plenty of ventilation) for Pilates, yoga & massage therapy. 

‘Core’ is a relaxing space dedicated to helping you to become relaxed, stronger, focused, flexible. In this photo they're taking advantage of a pleasant evening outside at the Battery. Core offers Pilates, yoga and massage therapy and can provide you with a unique combination of these to suit your requirements.  You can book one-to-one sessions, or therapy appointments.

To find out more, contact:-- Tel: 07890618755, 49 High Street, Dunbar, East Lothian, EH42 1EW, Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Photo from Core Dunbar

If you wish to use the Battery for any events, please contact: https://dunbarbattery.org.uk/booking-of-events/

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Recently we’ve often seen Forth Guardsman. She is a Landing Craft, built in 1983, sailing under the flag of the UK . Here we see her anchored just outside the Battery. She visits quite often (not many hostelries in the North Sea).

Gross Tonnage: 654  Length x Breadth: 58.7 x 14.81m, with a carrying capacity of 722 t DWT. Her current draught is reported to be 2.5 meters.

Photo 1 by Kenny Maule,     

Click <<READ MORE>> for photo 2 from https://www.marinetraffic.com

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12th August at 11pm til midnight: the forecast was for a clear night, a good time to watch the Perseids shooting stars which come in August BUT it was very foggy instead and you may have heard the foghorns of 4 ships sounding with a mellifluous harmony in the night. My wife and I moved onto the balcony to appreciate the pleasure of hearing these sounds of our childhood when the lighthouses’ foghorns would lowly reverberate down the East Lothian coast (Bass Rock, St. Abbs, Isle of May for my wife) and the Ayrshire coast (Pladda & Ailsa Craig for me). There are no active foghorns remaining in the UK, however Sumburgh’s restored foghorn, last sounded in 1987, can be sounded on special occasions.

Photo 1: the ships offshore at the time they sounded their foghorns (credit https://marinetraffic.com).

Click <<READ MORE>> below to see photo 2: Ardnamurchan foghorn, credit https://uklighthousetour.com 

Now there may not be anything special about the Sumburgh Head Foghorn, but the people who restored it believe it to be the last working foghorn in Scotland. Sumburgh is in South Shetland. To sound the foghorn, the diesel engines are started  and air is compressed into large reservoir tanks at 25 PSI. Then a worker needs to go up a spiral stair case to the horn room and activate it from there. Every foghorn has it’s own unique sounding pattern, and it differs from other foghorn signals in the area, Sumburgh's horn blows for one 7-second blast every 90 seconds. This allowed ships’ captains in the area to know which horn is warning them. 

Listen and dream:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLlsRsUX78w

Question: Why are foghorns designed to emit their tones at such low frequencies?  Answer: Foghorns have very low pitches because sounds with low pitches have a long wavelength. This is important because a long wavelength means that the sound wave can easily pass around barriers, like rocks. This property of a wave is called diffraction. 

Question: What is the difference between frequency and pitch?  Answer: Frequency is the emission, pitch is your perception.

Question: How far away can you hear a foghorn?  Answer: about 20 miles

Have any questions? Give us a call 01368 865 404