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About the Trust

The Dunbar Harbour Trust was incorporated in 1999 with the primary objective of operating the harbour for the benefit of port users and the local community. The Trust was formed by a number of Dunbar harbour users who considered that the harbour could be developed with improved facilities for the professional and leisure users as well as becoming a focal point for the local community.
An approach to East Lothian Council (ELC), the owners of the harbour, resulted in an agreement to negotiate a transfer of responsibility for the operation of the harbour to the Trust. This resulted in the Revision Order of 2004 which gave the Trust full responsibility for the harbour.

Read more about us in the following articles:


Situated at the mouth of the Firth of Forth Dunbar is one of East Lothian's most beautiful & popular seaside towns, it is known nationally & internationally as the birthplace of John Muir, renowned naturalist & conservationist.
Dunbar is located 30 miles east of Edinburgh and approximately 30 miles north of Berwick upon Tweed with good bus and train links both north to the Capital and South to Newcastle and beyond.
Dunbar features historic buildings, spectacular landscapes and rugged coastlines and around the harbours are attractive former warehouses and granaries.
A town of three harbours, Dunbar was once a major herring and whaling port.Its old harbour dates from the 17th century. Dunbar Harbour is a busy working harbour with a commercial fleet landing mainly shellfish. The harbour is also home to one of the largest lifeboat stations in the area and there is a thriving Sailing Club and a Coastal Rowing Club as well as attracting many diving clubs to enjoy the seas around Dunbar.
The old castle walls host the UK's most accesible Kittiwake colony and, if you're lucky, you may also see Sammy, the resident friendly seal, who spends his time swimming around the harbour hoping for a fish supper from the fishermen.
Part of Dunbar's character is its wide, historic high street, with its distinctive architecture, historic Town House and John Muir Birthplace. Dunbar is packed full of local independent businesses which helps maintain its diversity and distinctive character.

The Dunbar Harbour Management Committee is a sub-committee of the Harbour Trust and exists for the purpose of overseeing the day to day running of the harbour.

The committee meets monthly to discuss a wide range of topics including maintenance, repairs, Health & Safety and any other matters to do with the routine business of the harbour and publishes reports of it’s meetings. 

The committee also has it’s own small budget which it can spend as necessary and largely without reference to the Board.

Committee membership includes the harbourmaster, directors of the trust and representatives of the harbour users and the members at present are

  • Chairman Eric Robertson harbour resident and DHT Director

  • Andrew Brown DHT director

  • James Bissett - Fisherman

  • Kevin Keilor - Fisherman

  • Neil Brunton - Fisherman

  • Ian Combe - boat owner

  • Johnny Blyth - harbour resident

  • George Johnstone - rowing club member

  • Quentin Dimmer - Harbour Master

The Harbour Management Committee are anxious to represent the interests of all harbour users and would welcome additional members from outside the Trust.

Anyone interested in joining can apply by contacting the Harbour Master or through any of the committee members.

The Board’s vision is:

To retain and enhance the character of Dunbar Harbour whilst updating harbour facilities to meet the requirements and expectations of harbour users in the 21st century.

The Board’s Mission Statement is:

The Board is committed to running a safe, efficient and welcoming harbour that caters for the needs of all harbour users, visitors and the local community as well as the environment.

The core principles that underpin all the activities of the Board are:

  • Safety
  • Stakeholder Involvement
  • Value for Money
  • Environmental Stewardship

Strategic Objectives identified by The Board are to:      

  • Maintain and develop the harbour infrastructure to meet the needs of the fishing industry, recreational users, visitors and the local community.

  • Improve  the environment of the harbour.

  • Place Dunbar amongst the safest small harbours following the guidelines in the Port Marine Safety Code.

  • Support public education, tourism and the arts. 

Dunbar Harbour consists of two Harbours: the Victoria Harbour and the Cromwell Harbour.

The Harbour Management Committee, a sub-committee of the Harbour Trust, is overseeing the day to day running of the harbour.

The Harbour Bylaws require that the Harbour Master is contacted prior to use being made of any of the harbour facilities and that payment of the relevant charges is made. Details of all charges are set out on the charges page.

Please contact HM or deputy prior to launching your vessel or entering the harbour. They will then be able to assist you with finding a suitable mooring.

Contact on VHF Channel 12 or the harbour channel 156.6 MHz.

They also listen to Channels 6 and 16 while the Harbour Master's office is manned.
Please note that the Harbour Master's office is not manned 24 hours a day.

The telephone number is 00 44 (0)1368 865404 and mobile telephone number is 07958 754858.


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