The Dunbar Harbour Trust issues a regular newsletter with the latest soundbites from the website and announcements of upcoming events and activities. You can receive the newsletter in your email box by enterering your best email on the right of this page.


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On the scent of …….. Fergus, a flat-coated retriever. In the best tradition of tabloid reporting and dodgy puns here is a shaggy-dog ‘tail’.

The ILB crew was briefed: “There’s a wet dug on they rocks at Belhaven. Fetch!” It was a slim lead, just a sniff but they set off, on the scent, engine snarling. The ILB arrived at the rocks, saw Fergus was ‘terrier’fied and bedraggled, with a hang-dog expression. He had been hounding birds, in ‘pup’suit of a young gannet and had ‘pawsed’ on the rocks, Toto-ally ‘pup’lexed. One of the crew disem’bark’ed then collared Fergus and man-handled him into the boat. Retriever retrieved …..  It had been a ‘ruff’ day, so he’ll be kept on a short leash noo!

Photo credit Dunbar RNLI, fb page

Video:https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10157987161103175&id=560288174 (credit Gordon Kirkham)

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  • Annual Harbour Users Meeting on Dec.10th, by Zoom
  • You only need to click on the Zoom 'blue link' at 6.45pm (may need to wait a few seconds or retry)
  • 6.45pm start with an intro from Alasdair Swan (allows 15 minutes for everyone to join)
  • 7pm, presentation of the 'slide-show': an explanation of harbour improvements during the last 3 years.
  • There is no need to attend the Zoom meeting, you can watch these silent 'slides' anytime, they are self-explanatory:
  • http://www.dunbarharbourtrust.co.uk/images/PDF/Harbour_Improvements_2018-20__General_Fishermen_RNLI_Leisure_blue.pdf
  • 7.30pm 'slides' end, 8pm close of meeting, both approx.
  • Please email any questions later to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Zoom link details below (I'll email them again on the day)
  • Alasdair Swan is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting. Topic: Dunbar Harbour Users' Meeting
    Time: Dec 10, 2020 6:45 PM London
    Join Zoom Meeting  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88695915148
    Meeting ID: 886 9591 5148


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Just an 'early warning'. Our annual Harbour Users Meeting will take place on the evening of Thursday, December 10th. 

Due to Covid, this year's meeting will be on Zoom. You'll be reminded in the end-November newsletter and again by email, giving the 'blue link' for the Zoom. Everyone will be able to join just by clicking on that 'blue link'. After the Zoom meeting you will be able to ask questions by email and these will be answered by the appropriate Trust Director.

More details/timing to follow ..... 

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Belhaven swans avoiding the paparazzi, but they couldn't avoid being snapped by Malcolm Quirie

From Kenneth Grahame, poem ‘The Wind in the Willows’:

“All along the backwater, through the rushes tall, 
Ducks are a-dabbling, up tails all! 
Ducks' tails, drakes' tails, yellow feet a-quiver,
Yellow bills all out of sight, busy in the river!" 
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Boat owners seldom get a nice photo of their own boat, as they’re always at the helm. Above is a fine photo of Tangaroa, Belhaven Lobsters, taken by a crew-member. 

John Muir quote: “This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried all at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.”

Photo of Tangaroa, courtesy of @mr_guesty

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On the 7th Oct. 8--9pm, you probably heard a helicopter circling for more than 1 hour, in darkness over Auldhame, clearly audible in our harbour area. It was an Apache helicopter, ‘Hydra 1’, on an Army Air Corps exercise.

Photo from Flightradar 24.

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Caledonia TV were filming a programme for part of a series called ‘Mach à Seo!’ (‘Outta Here’ in English) for the Gaelic channel BBC ALBA. It’s about weekend staycations in Scotland where presenter, Ramsay seen in photo, shows the highlights of what you can do in various  areas. This specific episode is based on a weekend away in East Lothian and Ramsay starts his trip in Dunbar where he cycles part of the John Muir Way to North Berwick. 

Caledonia TV do not currently have a release date although the programme is expected to go out early next year. 

Photo by Researcher Robyn Low

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Charlie Head is currently circumnavigating Scotland, anti-clockwise, SOLO AND UNSUPPORTED, on a paddle-board (SUP) and arrived in the harbour in early-October for 2 days rest, awaiting favourable winds. 

Charlie has previously been round England and Wales and the last leg of his incredible adventures will be going round Scotland, during October ‘til Christmas or thereabouts! He's supporting the ‘DARE 2 EXPRESS’ mental health charity. 

Quote: “I've arrived in Crail after a really beautiful paddle from Dunbar via the Isle of May, when the Northerly winds started and the tide turned against me. Made camp and now food and an early night??”  Track his progress on  www.charlieheadsup.com

Charlie is now passing Wick and heading north.

Read more by visiting his website https://charlieheadsup.com/#scotland

Photos from Charlie's website.  Photo 1, crossing the Firth of Forth.

Click <<READ MORE>> for photo 2: Charlie’s tent at Crail, just before the deluge washed it away that evening.

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‘Switch Off Engine’ signs are being installed around the harbour to encourage people to switch off their engines, also boat engines.  Three more signs will follow soon, given at no cost to the Trust.

The first sign was put up in time to mark Clean Air Day on October 8th  https://www.cleanairday.org.uk/scotland

Photo by Kenny Maule

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Scientists involved in the serious business of monitoring and measuring sea level rises will use Dunbar’s tide gauge over the coming decades. 

How do you measure sea level? In 1917 the Ordnance Survey set up tide gauges in Felixstowe (1913), Newlyn (1915) and Dunbar (1917). Ours is still fully-operational to this day (we should probably have had a wee party three years ago to celebrate its centenary!)


Marine Scotland Information: Summarising the sea level changes around Scotland based on central estimate projections for 2080-90 using the medium emission scenario:

Relative Sea Level - the least predicted rise, about 30 cm by 2095, occurs in the Clyde to Skye coastal waters, as well as the inner Firth of Forth and Moray Firth. The remainder of the mainland experiences approximately 35 cm rise over the same period, while the Hebrides and Orkney experience a rise of 40 cm, and about 50 cm in Shetland.

Storm surges / tides - current estimates do not suggest storminess will increase significantly over Scotland, making the predictions of increases in storm surge heights over the next 100 years small. For example extreme storm surges with return periods of 2, 10, 20 and 50 years are between about 1 and 3 cm by 2095. There is some regional variation.  Currently, the highest storm surge that may occur in a 50-year period raises the sea surface by between 90 and 180 cm. The effect is least on the east coast and in Shetland, and greatest on the west coast. 

Wave height -  significant wave heights north of Scotland will decrease by about 30 cm in the winter.  The other seasons have different patterns of change, although changes are quite small.

UKCP09 projections - Sea Level / Storm surges, Tides and Wave Height Change (medium emissions, 2080-2090 projections)

Have any questions? Give us a call 01368 865 404