WE TAKE a look at the stories making headlines in East Lothian 25, 50 and 100 years ago.


25 years ago

‘COURAGEOUS Debora in class of her own’ was a headline in the East Lothian Courier on September 22, 1995.

A Musselburgh teenager’s courage and determination have helped her to beat the odds and fulfil her dream of going to university.

Eighteen-year-old Debora Smith, of Stoneyhill Avenue, was born with a spinal defect which was aggravated after a fall during a gymnastics session when was she was 11.

The accident also disrupted her school career at Musselburgh Grammar, causing her to miss a year of study, and made her teachers doubtful about her future.

But through hard work and bravery, Debora confounded their predictions and became the only girl in Scotland this year to gain a Certificate of Sixth Year Studies (CSYS) in Engineering.

This weekend, Debora heads south to start a new life studying for a degree in Engineering Design at Huddersfield University.


50 years ago

‘DUNBAR stable lads rescued from blaze’ was a headline in The Haddingtonshire Courier on September 25, 1970.

Two stable lads who were trapped by fire in an upstairs room at a house in West Barns, Dunbar, on Tuesday, were brought to safety down a ladder.

The fire, which occurred at “Beltonford” – the house occupied by employees of race-horse trainer Mr Tommy Craig – was discovered by 21-year-old Tom Harding, another stable lad. He awakened about 2.30a.m., smelled smoke, heard the crackle of flames, and found an armchair and floorboards in the livingroom were on fire.

He was able to leave the building but his companions were trapped in an upstairs room by the density of the smoke on the staircase.


100 years ago

THE derailing of a Haddington train near Longniddry was reported in The Haddingtonshire Courier of September 24, 1920.

About nine o’clock, on Thursday night, the Haddington branch engine was derailed on the main line at the west end of Longniddry station.

The down main line to Berwick was blocked for a short time, and traffic had to be run on the single line.

No time was lost in re-railing the engine, and the passenger train service was only slightly delayed.

Meanwhile, a sawyer from Innerwick received a severe injury while at work.

On Thursday, John M Kay (24), sawyer, residing at Branxton, Innerwick, was engaged at a circular saw in the mill of Messrs Souness & Speirs, when his right arm came in contact with the saw, and was severely lacerated.

He was conveyed to Dunbar and medically attended to, after which he was removed to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.