infobox UK place
country = Scotland
official_name= Aberlady
population= 873 [cite web|publisher=Scotland's Census Results Online|title =Comparative Population Profile: Aberlady Locality | url=http://www.scrol.gov.uk/scrol/browser/profile.jsp?profile=Population&mainArea=aberlady&mainLevel=Locality | date = 2001-04-29| accessdate =2008-08-31 ] (2001 census)
est. 1,140 [http://www.gro-scotland.gov.uk/statistics/publications-and-data] (2006)
os_grid_reference= NT465798
unitary_scotland= East Lothian
postcode_district = EH32 xxx
postcode_area= EH
dial_code= 01875 7

Aberlady (Gaelic: "Obar Lìobhaite") is a coastal village in the Scottish council area of East Lothian. On Aberlady Bay, it is five miles northwest of Haddington and approximately 18 miles east of Edinburgh, to which it is linked by the A198 Dunbar - Edinburgh road.

Aberlady Parish Church was opened in 1887. In the 1980s, the parishes of Aberlady and Gullane were merged, and the Manse is now in Gullane.

Aberlady is surrounded by several well-known golf courses including Luffness, Kilspindie and Craigielaw.


In the Middle Ages, Aberlady was an important harbour and was referred to as "the Port of Haddington". Medieval coins and Anglo-Saxon items have been found.

Aberlady had strong links with the monasteries at Iona and Lindisfarne, and its role was to facilitate the pilgrim traffic between the two sites. Previous archaeological excavations have shown traces of a Culdee chapel, and Pope Gregory X made reference to the church which he called "Aberlefdi". The Aberlady Cross fragment can be seen at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.

Aberlady Conservation Society was formed in 2001 as a community based history and conservation society. The "Aberlady Heritage Project" is a community-led project, and in 2008 it surveyed three sites in Aberlady which are of maritime heritage interest.


In 1952, Aberlady Bay became the UK's first Local Nature Reserve or LNR. Amongst its other conservation designations are: Site of Special Scientific Interest or SSSI; Special Protection Area or SPA; and Ramsar site. East Lothian Council provides Reserve Wardens.

Waterston House, overlooking Aberlady Bay, is the headquarters of the Scottish Ornithologists' Club (SOC). It is named after George Waterston, the founder of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.

The Library holds over 3,500 items and is said to be the largest ornithological library in Scotland.

The art gallery space is named after wildlife artist Donald Watson who was President of SOC. The gallery specialises in bird-related paintings, but in May 2008 it had a textile exhibition named "Flights of Fancy".

The author Nigel Tranter was inspired to write on his daily walks on the nature reserve. A cairn in his memory stands at the car park by the wooden footbridge; Nigel Tranter referred to it as "the bridge to enchantment".

ee also

*List of places in East Lothian
*List of wildlife artists
*North Sea Trail
*John Muir Way


External links

* [http://www.snh.org.uk/about/lnr/detail.asp?id=8122] Scottish Natural Heritage webpage for Aberlady LNR
* [http://www.elh.info/site/pages/local-heritage-groups/aberlady-conservation-society/aberlady-heritage-project.php] Aberlady Conservation Society and Aberlady Heritage Project website

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Aberlady Bay — is a bay in East Lothian, Scotland between Aberlady and Gullane.In 1952, Aberlady Bay became the UK s first Local Nature Reserve (LNR) and is served by the East Lothian Council Rangers.The Scottish Ornithologists Club has Waterston House as its… …   Wikipedia

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