Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016

Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design logo2016 is the Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design and this website is your gateway to a wealth of information about East Lothian’s design, innovation and architectural heritage. Read on to find out more and be inspired to get out and about and see some of our wonderful buildings, sites, landscapes, towns and villages.

The following are just some of our most creative and inspiring innovators and designers (you can find out more about them in our blog):

James Meikle (1690c–1718c) lived at Houston Mill on the Phantassie estate in East Linton and invented a device for winnowing grain and a barley mill.

Andrew Meikle (1719 – 1811) invented a threshing machine and helped in the invention of the Rotherham Plough; regarded as one of the key developments of the British Agricultural Revolution in the late 18th century.

George Meikle (d.1811) is best known for the invention of an ingenious water-lifting wheel, in 1787.

Thomas Wilson (1782 – 1873) was born in Dunbar. Along with his partners John and Thomas Smellie he constructed the first built the first wrought iron riveted ship in 1819.

bust of John Muir

Bust of John Muir

John Muir (1838 – 1914) was born in Dunbar and is well known as the father of modern conservation. He was also a wonderfully creative inventor. You can find out a great deal about John Muir at his Birthplace, now a 5* Visitor Centre in Dunbar.

John Rennie (1761 – 1821) from the Phantassie estate at East Linton, was a civil engineer best known for his work constructing canals and bridges.

James Howden (1832–1913) from Prestonpans was a marine and general engineer and he invented a forced-draught system for boilers which provided a more efficient combustion process at varying speeds, using any quality of steam coal.

Robert Blair (1748–1828) from Garvald, a surgeon and the first Regis Professor of Astronomy at Edinburgh University, who created small telescopes.

James Paterson (1770–1806) of Musselburgh developed the machine process for manufacturing fishing nets.

Sir William Fergusson (1808–1877), a surgeon from Prestonpans, invented a number of surgical instruments.

Robert Wilson (1803–1882) of Dunbar invented the screw propeller that was eventually used in torpedoes.

James Porteous (1848–1922) from Haddington, invented the Fresno Scraper, a type of digger.

If you would like to find out more about the heritage, architecture, buildings, landscapes and archaeology of East Lothian you would be well advised to download the Heritage Explorer leaflets both of which provide ample information about these subjects.

The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016 is a Scottish Government initiative being led by VisitScotland and supported by partners, Scottish Government, Creative Scotland, Architecture + Design Scotland, Scottish Tourism Alliance, Scottish Enterprise, The National Trust for Scotland, Historic Environment Scotland and Highlands and Islands Enterprise.