What’s On in August: East Lothian and the Borders

Posted by Lowlandlettings on 28 July 2015

Want to keep up with events in East Lothian and the Borders? Then this is the blog for you.

Welcome to the very first edition of my ‘What’s on’ blog, where each month I’ll be detailing exactly what’s happening in and around the Scottish Borders and East Lothian – so you’ll never miss out on any of the fun stuff.

There’s so much happening in August around here, but I’ve put together a list of the best upcoming events below, starting with East Lothian.

Note: This list was compiled and deemed accurate to the best of my knowledge at the time of posting.

East Lothian

northberwickbeach North Berwick, East Lothian.

(In date order)

North Berwick Highland Games – Recreation Park (Saturday 8th August)

First on my list is of course, the North Berwick Highland Games – a national event that’s well worth a trip to East Lothian. Perfect if you love the traditional Scottish Highland Games, you can watch competitors take part in various heavy events and plenty more where that came from! Admission price is £8 for adults, £5 for children (under fives go free), and family tickets are £20.

Find out more of what North Berwick Highland Games has to offer by checking the official website.

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland: Pianos @ One – Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh (various dates)

If you’re a fan of classical musical, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s Pianos @ One promises to be a delight. Taking place as nine separate concerts between the 10th to 28th August, Pianos @ One showcases some of the Royal Conservatoire’s most talented students as they take on well-loved classics. You can even enjoy each concert over lunch (soup and a sandwich) in the upstairs bar – just remember to book!

Find the full list of performances and times on Brunton Theatre’s website.

Family History Day – John Gray Centre, Haddington (Saturday, August 29th)

Want to know more about your own family history? This incredible free event, which launches this year’s Archaeology & Local History Fortnight (ELAF) allows you to find out more about your roots. There will be three separate speakers and three workshops you can participate in – as well as some inspiring and fun activities for kids!

If you’re interested in Family History Day, more information (including a full timetable of the day’s events) can be found here.

Edinburgh Fringe Festival (Friday, 7th – Monday, 31st August)


Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without a quick mention of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. But because it’s the world’s biggest arts festival, I’ve actually given the Fringe its own blog post, which you can read right here (INSERT LINK TO FRINGE BLOG).

The Scottish Borders

(In date order)

Traquair Fair – Traquair House, Innerleithen (Saturday 1st – Sunday 2nd August)

Can you believe Traquair Fair is in its 33rd year? And this year’s theme is ‘Americana’! So, you’d better mosey on down to Traquair House to take part in an unbeatable weekend of fun and festivities for all the family. There’s a fantastic line-up complete with wild west shows, theatre, and a mix of country, soul, bluegrass, and Celtic Americana music. Kids can even have a go on the rodeo bull! You’ll also find classic American films, dance, workshops, storytelling and vintage automobiles and bikes.

Traquair Fair now has its own website where you’ll find the full programme of events.

Coldstream Civic Week – Various Venues (Sunday, 2nd – Sunday, 9th August)

If Traquair Fair doesn’t float your boat, how about a visit to Coldstream for the annual civic week? There you’ll find traditional summer celebrations, complete with fancy dress and a torchlight procession. Four rideouts will be happening throughout the week, and I hear there will also be some bussing of the Burgh flag. Savvy?

You can find out more about Coldstream Civic Week via the official website.

Handlebards: Hamlet – Bowhill House & Country Estate (Thursday August 13th, 6:30pm)

lowlandlettings 010 Bowhill Estate

If you like bikes and you like Shakespeare, this could well be the show for you. Four young men with bicycles have decided to take on the brave task of performing the most profound Shakespearean tragedy – I’m really curious to find out how well it’s going to translate. Guaranteed, this is Shakespeare as you’ve never seen it before.

More details can be found here.

Glimpses of the magnificent Bowhill house
Glimpses of the magnificent Bowhill house 


Peebles Art Festival – Various Venues (Friday, 28th – Monday, 31st August)

If you love the idea of celebrating the very best of Peebles, this weekend’s just for you. There will be tours of the Tweed, and the various hidden buildings and curiosities of Peebles itself. Combine that with busking musicians, a touring French dance company, an art trail AND great food, and what have you got? Fun to be had by all. Enjoy!

Check out the full 2015 Festival programme via on the official website.

Massed Pipe Band Day – Floors Castle (Sunday 30th August)

A family favourite, Massed Pipe Band day has had a bit of a refresh this year, and it’s now bigger and better than ever. If you come along to Floors Castle on the 30th, you’ll experience highland dancers, pipe bands from all over the Borders, a Ceilidh band, birds of prey, facepainting, a bouncy castle, dog agility, garden tours and more!

If you begin to feel peckish, there’s also a food court and crafter’s fair – a welcome new addition to this traditional and much-loved event. Take in the atmosphere of the day in the company of the absolutely stunning Floors Castle; this promises to be a day to remember.

Find out more via the Roxburghe Estates website.

TIP: If you’re looking for somewhere to stay so you can enjoy some of these fabulous events over a long weekend, I may have the perfect holiday let available!


If you’re looking to keep up-to-speed with events in East Lothian and the Borders, you should subscribe to my blog as I’m going to be making this a monthly feature. And there’s just so much going on in August! Whether you’re into horses or Hamlet, pianos or Peebles, music or ‘Mericans (I cheated there), you’ll be sure to find something fun to do for all the family.

Is there anything I’ve missed? Let me know in the comments!

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