Prestonpans or Gladsmuir the actual name of the battle site, is the place where the first real battle took place after the Jacobite Standard was raised in Glenfinnan. To commemorate this year's event three groups came together to support the day, Crann Tara, Na Fir Dileas and Siol Nan Gaidheal. Although the three groups have different backgrounds it was considered that a show of unity is the way forward for things in Scotland .
The weekend had quite a programme of events taking place apart from ourselves, the Prestonpans Trust, [ a trust which hopes to raise enough funds to build a vistors centre.] also had lot of various things relating to the battle going on, [see www.battleofprestonpans1745.org ]
Although the trust event began on the Friday, it was not until the Saturday that some of us managed to get along to see what was going on. There was a memorial service to Colonel Gardiner at 10am at Bankton House followed by a re-enactment of the battle. As it was a family affair, it was well attended and enjoyed by all. The participants included members from the Glenbuchat Regiment and re-enactors from as far a field as the Czech Republic .
After a short break our contribution for the day began at 12 noon again back at Bankton House, where we marched three abreast led by a lone piper, to the road side cairn commemorating the battle approxiamately a mile away. At the cairn flowers and wreaths were lain and few words said before marching off to the bing, [this is the small man made mound] on top of which the Jacobite Standard is being flown from the flag pole. On reaching the top a commemoration to the battle was held, with an excellent view over the whole area, an account of the battle was given. This was followed by words from one representative from each of the three groups and music related to the battle sung by Ted Christopher and Kevin Wilson.
After the service closed some of the Crann Tara members went along to Athelstanesford, the site of the famous battle where the Saltire [ Scotland 's National Flag.] was born. Athelstanesford is a quaint little village, which can be described as quite sleepy. At the back of the Kirk is a birds doocot, where within is a wee exhibition all about how the flag originated. There is not a great deal to see, but it is well worth a visit.
Entertainment was provided for the evening at the Kilspindie House Hotel, in Aberlady, which was open to anyone. A great selection of music was provided by both Ted Christopher and Kevin Wilson, which created a great atmosphere and a very enjoyable night carrying on into the early hours.
By Jim Singer