Commemorating our Octocentenary

When we learned that our village was to be 800 years old in 2014 we realised that the anniversary was of both local and national importance. We therefore consulted widely with residents to establish their views on how they wanted to celebrate and commemorate this once in a life time occasion. We wanted to know what people's priorities and needs were in terms of improving our community and the environment of East Haven. We did this through meetings, questionnaires and home visits. Word of our consultation began to spread and people contacted us from all over Scotland and further afield to tell us about their connection with East Haven. They told us that they wanted to be involved too and contributed additional ideas. People were creative and ambitious in their feedback and key themes that emerged were:

  • A need to strengthen our identity as a fishing community and create a long lasting legacy.
  • A need to enhance and improve the natural amenity and environment
  • A need to explore more about our history and the people who have lived and worked in East Haven
  • A need to share information about our important heritage
  • A need to strengthen our own community
  • As a result, East Haven residents led by the East Haven 800 steering group have embarked on a number of projects to commemorate and celebrate this important historic occasion. Take a look at the sub pages linked to this page to find out more about each of our projects.

East Haven Residents' Association are indebted to the support of many departments within Angus Council for their strong support and encouragement. Through them, we have been enabled to achieve more as a community than we would have thought possible.

We are also grateful for support from Councillors Ewan Smith and David Fairweather and also Angus Provost Helen Oswald.

Funding Support

The residents of East Haven are extremely grateful to the following individuals and organisations for grants and donations towards East Haven 800

Awards for All Scotland - Big lottery Fund

Angus Council Community Grant scheme

Carnoustie Gala Committee A number of East Haven residents for donations in both cash and kind

Donations from former residents and friends

East Haven Land Consortium

Carnoustie Community Council

Local Businesses who have made such generous donations to our raffle. (See raffle page)

The Woodland Trust Scotland

We are also extremely grateful for all the support of volunteers who have so willingly given of their time and talents to take forward our many projects.

East Haven 800 - What did we achieve?

What was achieved?

A new web-site was launched and an ‘Our Easthaven’ facebook page was established.

Over 20 grant enquiries and applications were made in the space of a few months. Over £80,000 was raised for specific projects.

Residents acquired an old fishing boat which had been wrecked and left on the beach at St Andrews. They arranged for it to be transported back to the village and obtained a community grant from Angus Council to refurbish it. 

Residents met with representatives of Angus Council who agreed to lease land in the village square to enable the development of a community garden.

Residents rebuilt Eric’s bridge, a foot bridge at the  little burn, north of Shore Row. This much loved bridge was accidently removed during the creation of the new cycle path. Eric himself opened the bridge in a small ceremony held in October 2013.

In November 2013, Angus Provost Helen Oswald, planted a Whitebeam commemorative tree (Sorbus Aria Lutescens) in what was to become the East Haven 800 Beechgrove  Community Garden.

A bonfire was held on Hogmanay 2013 and 13 year old Carnoustie piper, Owen Sweeney, piped in East Haven’s  800th year.

Councillor, David Fairweather installed a commemorative bench in the picnic area. The bench is inscribed with a plaque, ‘Rest a while in this special place’     East Haven 1214 – 2014.

Residents launched a major community project involving the creation of heritage bunting. People from all over the UK and Maule in France designed a panel of bunting depicting something of their connection to East Haven. Each of the 125 panels tells it’s own story but together each panel tells the whole story of East Haven. The children of Coupar Angus Primary school contributed with a panel depicting the Abbey which is where East Haven’s story began in 1214. Each panel was photographed and uploaded into an online gallery on the web-site.

Councillor, Ewan Smith opened the East Haven Maritime and Heritage Exhibition in Carnoustie Library which was held over three weeks in April 2014. This was the largest exhibition of it’s type ever to have been held in the town. It brought together hard to find information and artefacts from both public and private collections. People visited from all over the UK and comments which were left in the visitors book were uploaded onto the web-site.

Residents obtained funding from the Angus Environmental Trust to develop a heritage point in the car park area overlooking the sea. This includes a shelter reflecting the fact that the fishermen used to have a shelter close by. Residents consulted widely on the design and content of the six heritage boards. Local artists, photographers and the RSPB, SNH, and the Angus Cetecan Awareness group were all involved.

Residents provided hospitality and heritage information to 160 visiting cub scouts on the 10th May 2014.

Residents marked ‘Clean up Europe Day’ in May 2014 with a major beach clean and were joined by Carnoustie Canine Capers and  Cadets from 2449 (Carnoustie) Squadron, Air Training Corps. Residents  provided an exhibition of their heritage bunting and refreshments. Residents signed the pledge with ‘Clean up Scotland’ and ‘Clean up Angus’. 

Residents refurbished a small fishing dinghy and placed it on the traffic island at the gateway to the village. Children were invited via social media to collect a beach pebble and help create a pebble beach around it. The boat was initially planted with daffodils and then with gold perennial plants to help celebrate 50 years of RHS. 

Residents acquired 30 small trees from ‘The Woodland Trust Scotland’. Children of the village planted them to create a lasting, living legacy for the future.

Residents made an application to Beechgrove Garden to see if they would like to help create the community garden. East Haven was subsequently selected as one of only four locations in Scotland to take part in the programme. During the period April to June 2014, residents and friends undertook a phenomenal amount of work to prepare the ground and establish a garden. At times it seemed like a herculean task to clear the area and then dig-in 20 tons of top soil and a further 20 tons of peat and compost. Restoration of the boat was also a considerable undertaking but, after many months, the boat was eventually lifted into a specially created bed of gravel in the garden. The boat was renamed ‘The Sisters’ after one of Davie Herd’s boats in 1912. The garden was completed during two days of filming on the 25th and 26th June by the Beechgrove Garden Team. It was an amazing experience for residents and a great sense of achievement and pride when it was completed.

On 28th June 2014 a small market was held in the village square reflecting the fact that East Haven was granted the right to hold a weekly market in 1541. Residents also welcomed the Queens Baton Relay which was piped in by former resident John Hill. The baton holder was able to climb on the boat and raise the baton which was a poignant moment for East Haven. 

Also in June, all three primary schools in Carnoustie and the High School, presented residents with  large heritage story boards telling the story of East Haven through multi-media art work. 

Residents entered Beautiful Scotland’s  ‘Wee Village in Bloom’ competition and achieved a 'Silver Gilt' award. 

On 23rd August 2014 residents held the East Haven Maritime and Heritage Event. This large celebratory occasion linked to the Scotland Homecoming  and focused on a Taste of Angus food, music and the arts. A number of heritage exhibitions, performances  and demonstrations were also held. 

Also at the Maritime and Heritage Event, Carnoustie brass band premiered a piece of music commissioned by residents and composed by East Haven musician, Gregor Beattie called ‘The Haven’.

Gregor Scott, the son of Dareena and Jack Scott at No.3 Long Row made several short films of East Haven 800 celebrations and these can be viewed on the web-site. 

A book was printed called 'Memories O' the Ha'en and has been made available  to the wider public. It comprises a rich collection of memoirs and stories which are now preserved for future generations. It is hoped that a copy will survive a hundred years so that future residents of East Haven will know how the residents of 2014 celebrated their octocentenary. 

Finally, East Haven Residents' Association was awarded the VistScotland Tourism Award for 2014 and the Herald Society award for Community Project of the Year.


East Haven 1214 - 2014