East Lothian

High Street, Cockenzie
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

High Street, Cockenzie

A settlement of East Lothian on the south side of the Firth of Forth, Cockenzie lies between Prestonpans and Longniddry and a mile (2 km) west of Port Seton with which it now forms a burgh. In 1591, King James VI created Cockenzie as a Burgh of Barony for the local landowner, Robert Seton, the 1st Earl of Winton (1553 - 1603). The natural harbour of Cockenzie, which served the ancient Seatoun, was improved in 1830 as a coal and fishing port. A wagonway carrying coal from Tranent to Cockenzie, built in 1722, was during the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745 the first railway to be used in warfare. Cockenzie House dates back to the 16th C. and the settlement was extended to the south with the building of public housing in the 1930s. While fishing continues, mining has ceased in this locality, whose sky-line was for many years dominated by the coal-fired Cockenzie Power Station which opened in 1967 on the site of the former Prestonlinks Colliery, closed in 2013 and was subsequently demolished.

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