The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

Description(s) from The National Gazetteer (1868)

"PRESTONPANS, (or Salt Preston) a parish, market town, and burgh of barony in the county of Haddington, Scotland, 8 miles E. of Edinburgh, and 9 W. of Haddington. It is a station on the North British railway. It comprehends the two baronies of Preston and Preston-Grange, which are commonly called the East and West baronies, and formed part of the parish of Tranent previous to 1606, when it was created a separate parish by the Parliament of Perth. In ancient documents it is called Aldhammer, but took the names of Preston Pans and Salt Preston from the salt works established here by the monks of Newbottle, to whom the manor was given by Robert de Quincey in the 12th century. The charter erecting the East barony was granted in favour of Sir John Hamilton, of Preston, in 1617. It is famous in history as the scene of the battle in which the Pretender Charles Stuart defeated the English forces under Cope, on the 21st Sept., 1745, and in which Colonel Gardiner was slain. This action was called by the Jacobites, "the action of Meadowmills," and by the Highlanders, "the battle of Gladsmuir." The parish, which is about 5 miles in length by 1 mile in breadth, extends along the shore of the Frith of Forth, and includes, besides the town of Preston Pans, the villages of Cuttle or Kuittle, Dolphinston (with Dolphinston Mains), Preston (including Northfield and Shaw's Hospital), Preston Grange (with Drummore, part of, the quoad sacra parish of Cockenzie). The only harbour in the parish is Morison's Haven, formerly called New Haven, which has 10 feet water at spring tides, and is esteemed one of the safest harbours in the Frith of Forth. The creeks are the Figgat-bourn, Mussel-burgh, Port Seaton, Aber-Lady, and North Berwick. The surface is in general level, and the soil fertile. The subsoil is sandstone and coal, with gravel and clay in parts. The collieries, though long ago opened by the monks of Newbottle, have not recently been worked, owing to the cheap supplies from the neighbourhood. The town of Preston Pans, which grew out of the salt manufacture, is of considerable antiquity, and has about 16,000 inhabitants, now decreasing. It is under the government of two bailies. It contains a custom-house, post-office, good ale brewery, soap factory, works for the manufacture of oil of vitriol, spirits of salt, and Glauber salts. Many of the inhabitants are engaged in the coasting trade, and in the Pandoor oyster and other fisheries; also, some in the making of bricks and tiles. The parish is in the presbytery of Haddington, and synod of Lothian and Tweeddale. The minister has a stipend of £290. The church was rebuilt in 1774. There are also a Free church and several other places of worship. At Preston Pans school, Sir Robert (afterwards Lord) Keith received his education.

"COCKENZIE, a quoad sacra parish in the parishes of Tranent and Prestonpans, in the county of Haddington, Scotland, 1 mile N.E. of Prestonpans. It is situated on the Frith of Forth, and ranks as a subport to Leith. The inhabitants are chiefly engaged in the salt-works and fisheries. The living is in the presbytery of Haddington, and in the patronage of the male communicants."

"CUTHILL, (or Cuttle), in the parish of Prestonpans, and a suburb of the town of Prestonpans, in the county of Haddington, Scotland.

"DOLPHINSTON, a village in the parish of Prestonpans, in the county of Haddington, Scotland. It stands 2 miles W. of Tranent, near an old castle, on the road from Edinburgh to Haddington."

"PRESTON GRANGE, a hamlet in the parish of Prestonpans, county Haddington, Scotland, 2 miles from Preston-Pans, and 9 E. of Edinburgh. It is a burgh of barony, and is commonly called "the West Barony." It takes the adjunct of Grange from the Grange which the monks of Newbottle Abbey established hero. The principal residence is Preston-Grange House, the seat of Sir G. G. Suttie, Bart., through the Grants."

[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]

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