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News

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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Photo 1  our FIRST kittiwake (magnifying glass out, can you spot it?) taking up residence on 24th February.

There will be hundreds on Dunbar Castle during spring and summer! The Kittiwake is a delicate and dainty seabird whose name resembles its calls. Can you hear them squawking “Ki-i-i-ti-wa-a-ke”? 

  • Food: Small fish, especially sandeels; the kittiwakes follow our fishing boats.
  • Nest site: On our castle walls or over-hanging rock faces. Their nests are mud, grass or seaweed, on impossibly-small ledges.
  • Breeding: Mid May to mid June, 2 eggs. The young birds depart in August to live off Greenland Coast then return to Dunbar after 2 years.
  • Wintering: Adults spend winter over the North Atlantic, as far as Canada, however some fly south.

An old Dunbar saying: Kittiwakes should return by the 16th March for Dunbar's ‘happy and prosperous summer’.

Photo above by Quentin Dimmer 

Click <<READ MORE>> for photo #2 (by Kenny Maule, during breeding, last summer)

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Work has now been postponed on the Maggie project due to Covid 19, however the latest information is:

Due to site levels, the number of stores has reduced to 5x single units to fit the site constraints, but this will have no impact on available units to let to fishermen. There will be 3x lettable units and 1x garage for the fishermens' forklift. The final unit will be for Harbourmaster use.

Work had started on-site with AG Thomson working on the foundations and slab. A concrete access ramp will eventually follow when possible and then the timber kit.

Photo by Kenny Maule

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The fish-merchants have mainly stopped buying as demand has stopped from wholesalers: initially for one month, so few landings are expected between now and the end of April at least.

A report from last week:-- https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/mar/18/coronavirus-severe-shock-to-uk-fishing-as-markets-dry-up

However some good-ish news, just come in:--

Dear Members,  For those of you who haven’t seen it, Fergus Ewing has announced £5m financial support for the in-shore fishermen   https://www.gov.scot/news/support-for-seafood-fishing-industry/    It will be administered through Marine Scotland via a letter to all qualified vessel owners and associations. Initial payment of 50% average of two months’ salary (based on 2019 average earnings).There is an email address if any queries.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Keep safe everyone.
Ros Rosalind McArthur, EMFF Programme Coordinator, Forth FLAG
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Here above is a photo from happier times. Sea Breeze, a beautiful boat, colour and proportions.

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A rescue helicopter and coastguards were called on the evening of Wednesday 18th March and set about conducting a search in the Canty Bay area. Dunbar Coastguard, North Berwick Coastguard, Senior Coastal Operations Officer S04B, Helicopter 199 (from Prestwick) and North Berwick Lifeboat were in attendance. North Berwick Coastguard said: "Following extensive searches and having completed our tasking, all coastal resources stood down shortly after 9pm. Remember, if you see someone or something you are concerned about on the shoreline, cliffs, mud or water, call 999 immediately and ask for the coastguard. If in doubt, call!"

Photo 1 is the search pattern, the helicopter's lights were clearly visible from Dunbar. 

Both photos from https://www.marinetraffic.com

Click <<READ MORE>> to see Photo 2: SAR helicopter 

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You have already received our Covid 19 statement a few days ago. Here is a photo of our main harbour as never before seen -- empty of boats and people. No-one knows what the future holds for the harbour but, rest assured, we’ll update you as soon as possible. Meanwhile keep yourself safe!

----------- Fishing Boats----------------
The Harbour Trust is very sensitive to the financial pressures that all of our harbour users are being put under at the moment. Consideration was given to the fishing boats in the harbour in these difficult times. Fortunately there is Government funding to help the commercial boat owners, which is obviously not available to our leisure users, and the case for granting the fishing boats a mooring concession will be revisited if, for any reason, the government funding is not forthcoming. In the meantime the Harbour Trust has agreed to grant extended credit terms to any commercial user who needs to take advantage of these terms.
  1. We would appreciate it if fishermen would tell us IN ADVANCE if they wish to extend normal payment terms. (We are quite approachable!)
  2. It will be appreciated if we could have a proposed payment plan
  3. We would expect fuel to be paid for within 14 days once everyone is back to work
We hope that this will ease some of the strain on cash resources. In the meantime, keep safe, and let’s hope it is not too long before the boats can get out to sea again.
 
----------- Leisure Boats----------------

Payments:  “The Harbour Trust remains very grateful for the financial support it continues to receive from all harbour users, but recognises that some people will be very hard-hit financially as a result of the coronavirus crisis. The Trust has agreed a reduction in mooring fees of 50%, with the following requirements:- The fee is paid by the due date of 31st March, there are no further refunds irrespective of the future status of restrictions throughout the sailing season and any hard-standing charges are paid in full."

Photos by Kenny Maule

Click <<READ MORE>> to see what a busy harbour should look like!

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STATEMENT ON COVID-19 FROM Monday 23rd March 2020

Dunbar Harbour is now closed to all non-essential vessels and all leisure activities.

Dunbar Harbour will remain open for all essential marine traffic and as a port of refuge.

Essential traffic includes fishing and commercial vessels, lifeboats and other emergency vehicles.

All visiting vessels entering Harbour limits must contact the Harbour Master on 07958 754858 or Deputy Harbour Master 07583 463991

Planned shore-based visits to the harbour should be cancelled, including the parking of campervans or motorhomes, except in relation to essential traffic, above. Visits to the various attractions/sites are not allowed, as is using the harbour for shore-based activities such as fishing, scuba diving, kayaking or paddleboarding.

Please note that current government guidelines apply to the harbour and Dunbar Harbour Trust kindly request that people consider others and follow the guidance.

If in doubt that your activity is not allowed or you require further advice, please contact the Dunbar Harbour Master or Deputy Harbour Master on the numbers provided above.

A Notice to Mariners will be issued shortly.

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On Saturday 22nd February a seal pup was spotted on the slipway to Broadhaven. It’s a grey or common seal pup, difficult to tell at that age, but its mum seems to like our slipway. This happens every few years.

An SSPCA officer collected the pup. When we see it again we hope it will be swimming!

Photo by Eric Robertson.

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The Dunbar Harbour Trust is delighted to support Dunbar Rotary who are visiting all schools in Dunbar Area in the next 2 weeks with the Purple Pinkie campaign* to End Polio Now. The Dunbar Battery will be purple until the end of Feb.!

In 1985, there were 350,000 case of polio in 125 countries worldwide! Now this has been reduced to just over 100 in total in Pakistan and Afghanistan following a huge immunisation programme involving WHO, UNESCO, Bill Gates and Rotary.

Find out more at; http://purplepinkie.com

Photo and electrics: thanks to John Band, aided by several Trust Directors

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"Our recently-elected MP, Kenny MacAskill, requested to visit Dunbar to learn more about the harbour from the Trust Directors. He was welcomed to McArthurs Store and briefed on current events and future priorities including, in these uncertain times, the sourcing of grant monies to protect Dunbar’s sea walls. Many thanks, Kenny, for your early visit!"

Photo courtesy of the DHT

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Report from Dunbar RNLI:  "Dunbar’s volunteer lifeboat crew had a rude awakening on the morning of Feb.9th when the pagers went off at 2.25am to join our RNLI colleagues from Anstruther in assisting a fishing boat stranded without power near the Isle of May.

The Ullapool-registered vessel had lost its steering then suffered engine failure after setting sail from Eyemouth for a night’s fishing at midnight.
When Dunbar’s all-weather Trent class lifeboat arrived on scene Anstruther’s Mersey class had already begun towing the fishing boat towards Pittenweem harbour in the hope that the pair of lifeboats would be able to manoeuvre the vessel in there. Dunbar’s ALB took over the tow but by 4am it was clear, with an ebbing tide, that it would not be possible to safely enter the harbour. The decision was taken to take the boat to Methil, where the tide would be favourable at around 11am. In worsening conditions, amid three metre waves and high winds with gusts of up to 60mph, the two crews safely moored the boat into Methil harbour shortly after 11am.
Dunbar deputy second coxswain Gordon Mackay said: 'It was a tricky job in challenging conditions and we were delighted it went well.'

We are grateful to the help of Anstruther crew and in particular Will Wood who joined us on board to provide vital local knowledge. We’re also grateful to Leanne Taylor, helm at Kinghorn lifeboat, who was on duty at Methil and kindly provided some much-needed sustenance after ten hours at sea!"

Photo from Dunbar RNLI's FB page.

Have any questions? Give us a call 01368 865 404

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