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[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer (1868)]

"PRESTONKIRK, (or Prestonhaugh), a parish In the county of Haddington, Scotland, 5 miles W. of Dunbar, and 5 N.E. of Haddington. This parish is about 5 miles in length by 3 in breadth, and includes the village of Linton, situated on the northern bank of the Tyne, a little above Preston. From the 12th century till the time of the Reformation this parish was called Linton, and is now sometimes colloquially called Haugh, or The Hatch, from the situation of the church on a flat or haugh on the margin of the Tyne. It is watered by the river Tyne, which winds through the middle of the parish, and falls into the German Ocean about 3 miles to the E. of the church, on a flat, sandy beach. The surface is in general level, except a solitary rock of an oval form, called Traprane Law, or Dun-Pender, which has an elevation of 700 feet above Sea level, and forms one of the most conspicuous objects after entering the mouth of the Frith of Forth. The soil is exceedingly fertile, with clayey marl and lime. The village of Preston is very ancient, and is supposed to have had a church in the 7th century, built by Baldred, long the patron saint of this parish. Near the ruins of the old church is St. Baldred's Well, and an eddy in the Tyne is still known as St. Baldred's Whirl. This parish, formerly a rectory, is in the presbytery- of Dunbar and Synod of Lothian and Tweeddale. The present church was built in 1770. There are a Free church and schools. The chancel of the old church is still standing, and is used as the mortuary chapel of the Smeaton family. On the S. bank of the Tyne stands Hailes Castle, once the seat of Earl Bothwell, who is said to have here concerted the murder of Darnley, with the Earl of Morton. It was dismantled by Cromwell in 1650, and afterwards became the property of Sir David Dalrymple, who, as one of the Lords of Session, was entitled Lord Hailes, and who wrote the "Annals of Scotland." In this parish is also an ancient pillar stone 10 feet high; and at Markle are the ruins of a religious house.

"EAST LINTON, a village in the parish of Prestonkirk, county Haddington, Scotland, 6 miles W. of Dunbar. It is a railway station on the North British line. The village is situated on the river Tyne, which is here spanned by a viaduct of the above line. The Free Church and United Presbyterians have each a place of worship. A corn market is held, and there is a branch office of the National bank. The village was anciently a burgh of barony, and is a prosperous place.

"HAILES CASTLE, in the parish of Prestonkirk, county Haddington, Scotland, 4 miles N.E. of Haddington. It is a fine ruin, once the seat of Earl Bothwell, standing near the bank of the Tyne."

[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson 2003]

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