A GREAT grandmother who has spent more than 60 years in East Lothian has put pen to paper to tell her story.

May Fairbairn, who was born in Orkney but went to school in Morham, decided to write the story of her life to ensure her great grandchildren knew all about her.

The 86-year-old spent three months putting together Neeps, Horses and Parcels, which is available to buy at Kesley’s bookshop, Haddington.

She said: “What inspired me was I had thought about doing it for about 10 years.

“I now have four great-grandchildren and I am 86.

“It was to have something left for my great grandchildren.

“My great grandmother – I would have loved to have known what she did. It has really taken off beyond what I ever thought it would.”

Mrs Fairbairn’s family are originally from Orkney; however, they moved to the mainland when she was four with her father John Robson finding work in Midlothian and then moving to East Lothian.

Despite her long time away from Orkney, Mrs Fairbairn, who ran the Post Office in Drem for more than 30 years, where she now stays, felt the islands and East Lothian were very much home.

Away from the Post Office, she also taught at The Compass School in Haddington, and volunteered at the town’s Roodlands Hospital, as well as at Appin Equestrian Centre, near Drem, which is run by her daughter Anne.

She said: “I have a lot of self-belief in myself and a lot of determination, which I inherited from my father. I was just looking for the next opportunity.”

Already, the autobiography has proven popular with family members, including daughters Anne and Fiona.

Throughout writing the book, May kept it a secret from her family but was pleased to say it had met with a positive reception.

May added her family were “very proud” and said: “They have been very, very supportive and my grandson and everyone, they have all been behind me.

“They thought it was a marvellous surprise to them all.”

However, it was after retiring from running the Post Office that May decided to return ‘home’ and to visit Orkney.

She said: “When I go up there, I feel Orkney is home.

“There is just something that tells me that if I had not been widowed, I would certainly be up running a bed and breakfast.”