Old Co-op Buildings

East Loan, Prestonpans, East Lothian, Scotland EH32 9ED

01875 814 989


Mon - Fri: 9:30 - 16:30



Below is a sample of some of the work we have managed to create during this ongoing project.

None of this however would have been possible without the initial generous donation from the Scotmid Community Connect foundation and the talent and imagination of the artists involved, namely Bruce Davies and Alex Hodgson. We continue to seek funding for this vital project which captures perfectly the living history of our community.

We would also like to thank the clients who participated for their kind permission to share their stories, so please look, listen and read about their lives and enjoy the end results as much as we all have.

May Quin

May Quin is a Panner through and through and a "weel kent face". Widowed young she brought up her family alone and despite difficult circumstances she never let life get her down and to this day still considers herself to be "The Luckiest Woman In The Pans" Tasked with puting her life to words and music was Bruce Davies and we think it is great. May even gets a few words in herself, which isn't like her. See what you think. Written and performed by Bruce Davies

Davie Kiman

Davie Kiman originally from Craigmillar and brought up by his Jewish grandmother. Davie has spent his whole married life with his wife Nessie in Prestonpans where his daughter and family all still reside. An ardent Jambo (but we won't hold that against him) and a former runner and goalkeeper in his youth. Renowned folk singer / songwriter Bruce Davies was tasked with making sense of Davie's life and puting it down in song, see what you think.

George Glynn

George is a well known face in Prestonpans and so he should be as he has lived in most of the houses (joke). Local singer / songwriter Alex Hodgson was tasked with capturing George's life in  song, linking back to his younger days winching and dancing in the local halls around Prestonpans. We think he captured the story perfectly, have a listen for yourself.

Jim & Ellen Baillie

Ellen and Jim are a lovely couple, married for 65 years. A Musselburgh lass who fell in love with a Prestonpans boy and moved into his family home where Jim had lived since he was two years old. They have since moved on to a new chapter in their lives and we wish them well.
You'll Always Be In My Heart, written and performed by Bruce Davies.

Alex Hogg

Alex married to his devoted Nora for over 60 years. Originally from the "Toon" but as they have stayed in Prestonpans for over 50 years now we will let them off. Nora's biggest pleasure in moving was getting her own back door. They have four grown up children who now have families of their own. A Cup Filled To The Brim written and performed by Bruce Davies

Rose Paxton

Rose was a gentle soul who sadly passed in May 2021. She moved to Prestonpans with her family following her husband's career in the R.A.F. A well known face in the local chapel and friend to everyone who knows her. The most tech savvy pensioner we knew who will be forever missed by all who knew her. Song written and performed by Bruce Davies.

Ina Berrick

Ina is a wonderful lady who loves to dance and enjoys her music. A local lass who along with her late husband George used to own a shop in Prestonpans, The Orchard, selling fruit, veg, flowers and groceries. She enjoys spending time with their family of five children and all the grandchildren. Her story so far has been made into a book for Ina and her family to enjoy.

Isa Gilberston

Isa was born and bred in Prestonpans and from a big family with Ina being the oldest. Along with her late husband Andrew they set up home here and raised their son William and their daughter Janice, now living in Australia. She recalls her life to date which has been made into a beautiful song written and performed by Bruce Davies

Charlie Watson

Charlie is a man of simple tastes, much like his choice of jokes, but he is always up for a laugh. He loves his bingo and quizzes and one day may win on his Who Wants To Be A Millionaire app. Born and raised in Prestonpans he is known and loved by many and an integral part of Harlawhill.

Tom O'Connor

The late Tom and his wife Irene are incommers to Prestonpans having lived and worked in Edinburgh most of their days. Tom was a lovely man who sadly passed away shortly after receiving his book. An interesting character who lived his life to the full as a train driver and Korean War veteran. Tom always had stories to tell and when he spoke you just had to listen.

John McMillan

John is born and raised in Prestonpans and married to his lovely wife with whom he has a daughter, now living in Australia. A hard worker until he suffered a stroke and a keen darts and dominoes player. He and his wife met in the local Labour Club and it was love at first sight for both. This song, written and performed by Bruce captures John's pride in his family and heritage just perfectly.

The Way We Were

This was a collaboration with local author Annemarie Allan who interviewed several of our members and put together a fascinating collective tale of growing up, working life, marriage and general words of wisdom from those who kindly took part in the project. It is an amazing look into the lives of a different generation and a marvellous piece of social history.

Evelyn Bellany

Evelyn was born and bred in Prestonpans and the mother to three loving sons and Granny to 5 grandkids. Her song looks back at her special memories of growing up in the Pans. Oor Place Caw'd Hame written and performed by Alex Hodgson

Bebe Berg

Bebe is an incredible lady in her late 90's but still going strong. She has an infectious smile and cheeky streak which just makes us love her all the more. A lady with a long and interesting life which has been captured perfectly by the talented Bruce Davies.

Jessie Denholm

Jessie is a proud Panner who has long connections with charitable organisations. A former nurse who is known to many through her work at the former Eastern General Hospital. A lady with a long and interesting life which has been captured perfectly by the talented Bruce Davies.

Helen Hunter

What can one say about Helen, a force to be reckoned with is one thing. A leading figure when it came to fighting for people's rights whether they be the miners during the 80's or fellow workers. A larger than life character with a heart of gold and a volunteer at Harlawhill for over 20 years right up until her untimely passing. Friend and local lad Alex Hodgson was given the unenviable task of writing a song for her which, thankfully for him, she loved. So much so she even tasked Alex to sing it at her funeral which he did to eveyone's delight. She may be gone to join her beloved Jim but she will never be forgotten and is imortalised forever in this beautiful song called Oor Cup Is Fu.

Betty Merritt

Betty is a very active lady who just loves to dance, especially line dancing. A former bowling champion and heavily involved with local bowling clubs. She just loves her family and really enjoys her days at Harlawhill. Always with a positive attitude to life and a smile on her face. Another hit by Bruce Davies.

Dorothy Clyde

Dorothy moved to Prestonpans from Peebles in 1947 where her mother took over a greengrocer / sweet shop in the High Street. Dorothy helped her out in the shop but loved painting and later took up a job with AW Buchan potters in Portobello as a decorator. After they moved from Portobello, Dorothy set up her own studio called Pypers Wynd Pottery. This became a huge success and her works are still sought after today. Alex Hodgson has managed to capture her history in this original song called A Borders Lass.

Bruce Davies

An award winning singer / songwriter and a full time professional entertainer since 1985. He has had many performance highlights including: - two solo concert appearances at the United Nations, Edinburgh Fringe and Folk Festivals as well as many television and radio appearances. He is currently the singing host of Edinburgh's "Spirit Of Scotland Show" and has recorded 5 albums.

Alex Hodgson

Alex Hodgson is a Scottish singer/songwriter based in Prestonpans, East Lothian. A relative of the original Sam Burns. Alex has a musical career spanning several decades and has performed for the Queen, the BBC and various radio stations, most recently on Forth 2. His music is distintively Scottish, with both a charm and humour that reflect his background and love of music.


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