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1st Mural Official Launch

Kate Hunter Sets a Brilliant Standard .. and we held our 1st Mural Official Launch on November 29th 2001
As confidently expected, our first mural artist, Kate Hunter, has done better than justice to our ambitions for Murals at Prestoungrange.

The first mural, which is on east and north facing panels on the baronial foreshore, has set an outstanding standard for everyone else to follow. After many years in public art, this was for Kate, standing on a scaffolding exposed to the worst autumn weather of the Firth of Forth and the sea lapping around her ankles on a bad day, a unique experience. But she was happy and proud on November 29th at the Official Launch of the Prestoungrange Arts Festival to be Guest of Honour. She readily recounts how many passers by had swopped tales with her and indeed inspired the north facing panel of the mural. Those passers by even included an internationally known muralist living in Cockenzie, Andrew Crummie, of whom much more we expect will be heard in the coming months.

The mural's two faces depict local miners and their steam engines, fisherfolk at Morrison's Haven, vitriol manufacture, the brickworks, bar soaps and coarse cooking salt. All her images were taken from local photographs, many lent by the Prestonpans Historical Society, for interpretation on the sea walls. Take a look for yourselves at the mural sequence as follows:

1. The east facing main mural panel
2. North facing associated mural panel
3. How the two murals fit together
4. The seashore is not far away!
5. Work in progress

The Official Launch took place in the warmth of the Cockenzie Centre not on the blustery foreshore! Alas, neither of the Barons could be there. Dolphinstoun was competing in Lanzarotte and Prestoungrange was poorly. So visting Head of the Family from Canada, Bryan Wills, and his wife Joan presided.

Bryan Wills' opening remarks

Some 50 guests joined us all at Cockenzie with the proceedings admirably arranged by Jane Bonnar and Anne Taylor. The major speaker was David Dick, OBE , former Vice Chancellor of Napier Univeristy where the Prestoungrange ceiling now hangs, and most recently author of Famous Lives in East Lothian over the Past 1000 years.

Peter Drummond-Murray, Chairman of the Scottish Heraldry Society, and his wife, together with David Lumsden of Cushnie were also there. So too was Jim Forster, Chairman of the Prestonpans Historical Society, seen talking with Lady Prestoungrange.

P.S. 10 further murals sites have been identified and as soon as the weather improves painting will resume!

Published Date: November 29th 2001

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