Riggonhead March, Battle of Prestonpans

In the early hours of the morning 20th September 2015 I arrived in a dark car park in Tranent. I was not alone, I had been persuaded to take part in reenactment of Riggonhead March by my friend Jan. We joined Bonnie Prince Charlie – Arran Johnston – with other reenactors to walk from Tranent to Seton.

I have the medal to prove it!


Before we set of we had the chance to have something to eat – scotch egg and soup.

It was an uneventful march – part of us getting lost at one point – but lovely to see the sun come up on a warm September morning.

This is a reenactment of a march that took place in the early hours before the Battle of Prestonpans.

On 20 September Cope’s forces encountered Charles’s advance guard. Cope decided to stand his ground and engage the Jacobite army. He drew up his army facing south with a marshy ditch to their front, and the park walls around Preston House protecting their right flank. A Highlander supporter, Robert Anderson was a local farmer’s son who knew the area well and convinced Charles’s Lieutenant General, Lord George Murray of an excellent narrow route through the marshlands. Commencing at 4 a.m. he moved the entire Jacobite force walking three abreast along that route, known as the Riggonhead Defile, in total silence arriving to the east of Cope’s army at Seton West Mains. Although Cope kept fires burning and posted pickets during the night as the Highlanders were making their move they were not spotted by the pickets until around 5 a.m. Source – Battle of Prestonpans trust

This is shown in the episode Prestonpans.

Seton Collegiate Church

Ok this might not have anything to do with the tv series or the books but it has connections to the time period the books are set in.

Seton Collegiate Church is on the road from Prestonpans to Longniddry. It is not far from where the Scots were at the Battle of Prestonpans.

Collegiate churches are so called because they housed a college, or community, of priests. These were brought together by the local landowner to pray for his and his family’s salvation. During the course of the 15th century, the Setons began the process of raising their parish church to collegiate status. After the death of Lord John Seton in 1434, his widow, Lady Catherine, added a small side-chapel to the south side of the church, to house her late husband’s tomb and a private altar. (The chapel no longer exists.) (Source – Historic Scotland)

It was damaged by zealots during the Wars of the Covenant in the mid 1600s, and the Setons’ support for the Jacobite cause led to it being desecrated again in 1715, this time by the Lothian Militia. At some point during this period the original nave, the only part of the church without a vaulted stone roof, fell into disuse and was demolished. The church later passed to the Earls of Wemyss who restored the surviving parts to become a family burial vault, and they in turn passed it into state care in 1946. (Source – www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk )

The church is set in charming well kept grounds. As we wandered round I spotted several slate signs which sounds like advice Claire might have used.

 

Mill at Lallybroch (Preston Mill)

Preston Mill was used for the Mill at Lallybroch. Preston Mill is in the village of East Linton in East Lothian. It is a National Trust for Scotland property which is only open Thursday to Monday during the summer. It offers guided tours around the kiln and mill. Next to the shop there is a small exhibition which includes some photos from when Outlander filmed at this location.

A very picturesque place worth visiting.