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Battle Lost but a War still to be Won - Making Auld Fowler's Proud

2nd Battle of Prestonpans ends in Bitter Defeat

Defeat all round really. Those who've had their wicked way and demolished the Auld Fowler's HQ have sullied their reputations. Those who campaigned feel put upon. The community at large which petitioned Scottish Ministers not once but twice has been made fools of.

click to enlarge all images and cuttings

And Jacquie Smith's cry echoes across the Forth: "We broke no rules. We followed the rules".

So when the rules make fools of us all, one has to ask not only who made the rules but what unwise ones were following them? And where had commonsense got lost along the way?

Not the first time The Pans has been taken for granted but let's hope it's the very last

It's all gone. The brewery, the salt works, the coal mine, the soap works, the potteries. Any chance that Cornwall might demand the Beam Engine back?

There really has to be a line drawn in the sand this week. It is to be hoped the Public Services Ombudsman to whom the Fowler's Affair has now been refered by the Arts Festival and the Community Council, will place the whole sequence under the spotlight and suggest improvements. We know in The Pans that inter alia we'd hope to ensure that:

1. Small communities with no effective power to determine their own destinies have it restored, as of legal right.

2. Historic Scotland will henceforth always respect the articulated history of the nation's local communities just as much the architecture of a building when making their Listing decisions in the name of Scottish Ministers.

3. What happens next to the town's Eastern Gateway honours Auld Fowler with the town's fine brewing heritage and the iconic building that has been destroyed.


By an extraordinary coincidence filming was taking place in The Pans on April 24th for a documentary on Sir Patrick Geddes, the great Scottish geologist turned botanist turned town planner. His credo was Place - Work - Folk, and of that more later. Gillian Hart and others were there too and offer the several images images included here.

Thank You, East Lothian News

And for another coincidence, East Lothian News chose the Thursday prior to the demolition to publish images from 1969 of both Auld Fowler's Brewery and its smart new art deco HQ and a piece on the outrage brewing at the Community Council.

click to enlarge press cuttings

Published Date: April 28th 2009

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