Exploration into the past
Sunday 4th September saw the beginning of the Archaeology and Heritage Fortnight for East Lothian. To coincide with this day some volunteers from the Siege of Haddington Research Group asked to do a geophysics survey of our church grounds. It has long been known that our church stands on the ground of a Franciscan Friary, the precinct of which is thought to have been converted into a bastion, housing a number of English guns that could cover the approaches to the East Port along the Sands and the Nungate Bridge in the sixteenth century. Records mention that certain landowners had ruins of the Franciscan buildings on their land and from this information a plan of the
Franciscan precinct can be placed into our site. The original friary in Haddington was almost certainly destroyed in 1244 when the town was attacked by the English.
The geophys survey unfortunately did not reveal much new information. A George II coin was found near the gate, but the ground was so dry from the lack of rain that it did not give up many of its secrets. Our thanks go to Jon Cooper who came to talk to us and who organised the geophys. I suspect we haven’t heard the last of his investigations and research!