East Lothian

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East Lothian
Aest Lowden  (Scots)
Lodainn an Ear  (Scottish Gaelic)
Skyline of East Lothian Aest Lowden  (Scots) Lodainn an Ear  (Scottish Gaelic)
Official logo of East Lothian Aest Lowden  (Scots) Lodainn an Ear  (Scottish Gaelic)
Coordinates: 55°55′N 2°45′W / 55.917°N 2.750°W / 55.917; -2.750Coordinates: 55°55′N 2°45′W / 55.917°N 2.750°W / 55.917; -2.750
Admin HQ Haddington
 • Body East Lothian Council
 • Control Labour minority (council NOC)
 • MPs
 • MSPs
 • Total 262.2 sq mi (679.2 km2)
Area rank Ranked 18th
Population (mid-2017 est.)
 • Total 104,800
 • Rank Ranked 21st
 • Density 400/sq mi (154/km2)
ONS code S12000010
ISO 3166 code GB-ELN
Website http://www.eastlothian.gov.uk/

East Lothian (/ˈlðiən/; Scots: Aest Lowden; Scottish Gaelic: Lodainn an Ear), is one of the 32 council areas of Scotland, and a lieutenancy area. For a time, it was also known as Haddingtonshire.

It borders Edinburgh, Midlothian and the Scottish Borders. Its administrative centre is Haddington, although its largest town is Musselburgh. East Lothian is also the name of a registration county, which has different boundaries to the council area.[1]


The council area was created in 1996, replacing the East Lothian district of the Lothian region. The district had been created in 1975 under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, consisting of the old county of East Lothian plus the burgh of Musselburgh and the parish of Inveresk (which included Wallyford and Whitecraig) which until then had been in the county of Midlothian.

When abolished, for local government purposes, in 1975, the county of East Lothian bordered the county of Midlothian to the west, and Berwickshire to the south.

In November 2017, a county flag competition was launched in East Lothian to register an official flag of East Lothian. Anyone willing to enter this competition was allowed to enter, which resulted in 623 entries to the competition. The end of entry submission time was the 28th of February 2018. Four final flag designs will be placed in a vote to the residents of East Lothian, and the final winning design will be unveiled in November 2018.[2]


Despite its size, the geography of East Lothian is varied. The county is surrounded by 40 miles of coastline where towns Musselburgh, Prestonpans, Cockenzie and Port Seton, Gullane, North Berwick and Dunbar lie along the coast of Firth of Forth estuary. The South of the County are Lammermuir Hills where the county meets the Scottish Borders. The River Esk, Lothian runs through Musselburgh where it empties at the north of the town into the Firth of Forth and the River Tyne, Scotland runs through several of East Lothian's villages and county town Haddington. The county has only two major towns which are landlocked, these are Tranent and Haddington.



Primary Routes[edit]

The A1 road travels through East Lothian where it meets the Scottish Borders southbound and Edinburgh northbound. The A1 throughout East Lothian is dual carriageway and major junctions include Dunbar, Haddington,Tranent, Prestonpans and Musselburgh.[3]

Starting in Leith, the A199 road also travels through the county, including Musselburgh; where it first enters the county, Wallyford, Tranent, Macmerry and Haddington before merging into the A1 in West Barns.[4]

Non-Primary Routes[edit]

Some non-primary routes in East Lothian are the A198, A1087, A6093 and A6137 roads.[5]

Public Transport[edit]


East Lothian is served by seven railway stations: Dunbar, North Berwick, Drem, Longniddry, Prestonpans, Wallyford and Musselburgh. Railway lines which travel through and stop at stations in the county include: The Abeillo North Berwick Line, The CrossCountry line and the London North Eastern Railway London to Edinburgh line.


East Lothian is well served by bus services. Operators in the county are: Transport for Edinburgh which operate Lothian & East Coast Buses, Prentice of Haddington and Borders Buses. East Coast Buses is the county's main bus provider connecting the towns and villages of East Lothian to the City of Edinburgh, the company has depots in North Berwick and Musselburgh.[6]


UK Parliament[edit]

The constituency of East Lothian covers the whole county. The current MP for East Lothian is Martin Whitfield.

General Election 2017: East Lothian[7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Martin Whitfield 20,158 36.1 +5.1
SNP George Kerevan 17,075 30.6 -12.0
Conservative Sheila Low 16,540 29.6 +10.1
Liberal Democrat Elisabeth Wilson 1,738 3.1 +0.5
Independent Mike Allan 367 0.7 +0.4
Majority 3,083 5.5
Turnout 55,878 70.6 -3.6
Labour gain from SNP Swing +8.6

Scottish Parliament[edit]

Most of East Lothian is in the East Lothian Scottish Parliament constituency and South Scotland region with the exception of Musselburgh which is in Midlothian North and Musselburgh and the Lothians region.

Local Government[edit]

East Lothian Council is based at John Muir House, Haddington. East Lothian elects 22 councillors across 6 wards. These wards are:

Ward 1: Musselburgh

Ward 2: Preston, Seton and Gosford

Ward 3: Tranent, Wallyford and Macmerry

Ward 4: North Berwick Coastal

Ward 5: Haddington and Lammermuir

Ward 6: Dunbar and East Linton

Following the 2017 election, the council is composed of the following parties:[8]

East Lothian Council Election 2017 Results
Labour Conservative SNP
Musselburgh 1 1 2
Preston, Seton & Gosford 2 1 1
Tranent, Wallyford & Macmerry 2 1 1
North Berwick Coastal 1 2 -
Haddington & Lammermuir 2 1 1
Dunbar & East Linton 1 1 1
Total: 9 7 6

Places of interest[edit]

Towns and villages[edit]

Towns & Villages of East Lothian

Civil Parishes[edit]

East Lothian or Haddingtonshire Civil Parish map.[9]

In 1894, John Martine published Reminiscences and Notices of Ten Parishes of the County of Haddington.[10]

Notable people from East Lothian[edit]

Sports personalities from East Lothian[edit]

Local media[edit]

East Lothian is served by two local paid-for weekly newspapers, the East Lothian Courier and the East Lothian News. The former, known locally as The Courier, is the better-selling and started in 1859 as the Haddingtonshire Courier (the name was changed in 1971). Some articles from the Haddingtonshire Courier and the Haddingtonshire Advertiser were published in 1883.[11] The paper was owned and operated by the family firm of D. & J. Croal, based in Haddington, until it was bought by the Dunfermline Press Group in 2004. The East Lothian News was first published in 1971, as part of Scottish County Press Group, with editorial offices in Dalkeith and printing at Bonnyrigg (both in Midlothian). The Scottish County Press Group was acquired by Regional Independent Media in 2000, which was in turn bought by Johnston Press in 2002.

East Coast FM (Scotland) is a community radio station run by volunteers which has been broadcasting since 2009 from studios at 8 Market Street in Haddington. The station is registered as a charity (SC042784). An FM Community Radio Licence was awarded to the station in September 2012 by regulator Ofcom and a frequency of 107.6 FM was allocated in January 2013. Broadcasting on this frequency started in March 2013. The station can be accessed worldwide across the internet through their website.

East Lothian FM is an Online Community Radio Station operated and managed by East Lothian Community Media Ltd. The station started webcasting to the county from their studio at 38 Market Street, Haddington in October 2011 and applied for a Community Radio Licence (on the FM band) during the application period that ended on 14 February 2012. The result of this application will be announced by Ofcom in due course.


  1. ^ "Land Register Counties and Operational Dates" (PDF). Registers of Scotland. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 September 2013. Retrieved 26 September 2013.
  2. ^ "A Flag For East Lothian - Haddingtonshire". British County Flags.
  3. ^ "A1 Road".
  4. ^ "A199 Road".
  5. ^ "Road Map East Lothian".
  6. ^ "East Coast Buses".
  7. ^ "Latest candidate announced for General Election". East Lothian Courier.
  8. ^ https://www.eastlothian.gov.uk/info/210600/elections_and_voting/12030/election_results/2
  9. ^ https://archive.org/stream/imperialgazettee02wilsuoft#page/n46/mode/1up
  10. ^ Martine, John; Wilson, E. J . (1894). Reminiscences and Notices of Ten Parishes of the County of Haddington. Haddington: W. Sinclair. Retrieved 30 September 2018.
  11. ^ Martine, John (1883). Reminiscences of the royal burgh of Haddington and old East Lothian agriculturists. Edinburgh; Glasgow: J. Menzies. Retrieved 30 September 2018.

External links[edit]