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Scottish Book Trust will be running the first Book Week Scotland, a national celebration of books and reading, from 26th November to 2nd December 2012.

They will work with a wide range of partner organisations, including libraries, schools, museums and workplaces, to deliver a packed programme of free projects and events, bringing Scots of all ages and from all walks of life together to celebrate the pleasures of books and reading.

As part of the celebrations, Scottish Book Trust will be publishing a special book of writing celebrating Scotland‘s favourite places. Written by members of the public and well known authors, thousands of copies of My Favourite Place will be distributed free throughout Scotland during Book Week Scotland. There is still time to submit your entry for possible inclusion in the book.

Sign up for Book Week Scotland updates

Join Book Week Scotland’s mailing list


My Favourite Place



Submit your entry to the My Favourite Place writing project



Refugee Week is all about having fun, broadening horizons and breaking down barriers. Every June the week long UK-wide festival of arts, cultural and educational events celebrates contributions refugees have made to the UK, and promotes understanding about why people seek sanctuary.

No one wants to become a refugee. No one should have to endure this humiliating and arduous ordeal. Yet, millions do. Even one refugee forced to flee, one refugee forced to return to danger is one too many.” Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

Each year Refugee Week grows and increases in profile, making its mark on the UK’s cultural calendar. This year’s theme Spirit captures:

  • Spirit of survival and the individual – the determination needed to flee persecution and rebuild your life
  • Community spirit – the connections between refugees and local communities
  • Scotland’s spirit – the cultural diversity of Scotland today

The Refugee Week Programme (3.7Mb, PDF) details many events, most of them in Glasgow, some in Edinburgh.

East Lothian Learning Partnership have produced  New Arrival? Your A-Z Guide to East Lothian

A few facts about refugees (who are often confused with economic migrants):

  • People seeking asylum make up just one per cent of the total population of Glasgow, Scotland’s largest and most diverse city.
  • Most of the people who arrive in Scotland seeking sanctuary are from Somalia, China, Eritrea, Iraq, Iran and Zimbabwe.  They have come here fleeing war, torture or persecution.
  • Most of the world’s refugees are given sanctuary in the world’s poorest countries.  The UK hosts only two per cent of some 10 million refugees worldwide.
  • An asylum seeker is someone who has made an application for asylum, or sanctuary, and hopes to be recognised as a refugee.  Everyone in the world has the right to claim asylum in another country if needed.
  • A refugee is someone whose application for asylum has been successful and who has been recognised as having a well-founded fear of persecution in their home country, as described by the United Nations Refugee Convention.
  • Persecution happens when someone is imprisoned, threatened or made a target because of their religion, race, beliefs or belonging to a certain group.
  • While they are waiting to hear if they can stay, people seeking asylum aren’t allowed to work and depend on small amounts of state support.
  • Most people seeking asylum do want to work, and many are professionally trained with lots of skills to offer.
  • Almost one third of refugees have contributed to society by doing voluntary work since arriving in the UK.

Child Safety Week is the flagship community education campaign run by the Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT). Through Child Safety Week, CAPT raises awareness of the accidents that seriously injure or kill children and how to prevent them.

Accidents are the second biggest killer of UK children. Thousands more children are left with injuries that take years to heal. The long-term psychological impact on children, and their families and friends, can last a lifetime, as can the scars.

Yet the steps that keep children safe from serious accidents are the small steps taken every single day by so many parents, grandparents and carers as well as by children and young people themselves. Be it putting their hot drink safely out of reach, teaching children how to cross the road safely, strapping their child into their car seat each time or fitting, and regularly checking, smoke alarms.

That’s why the theme for Child Safety Week 2012 is “Small steps to safety”.

Child Safety in East Lothian

The Carefree Kids project in Tranent aims to:

  • promote child and family health and home safety.
  • reduce the risk of home accidents by offering practical assistance, advice and support; and
  • provide information and advice on relevant health issues.

Who they help:

  • Families on low income living within East Lothian who have a child under the age of 5 or with special needs.

How they help:

  • By lending much needed safety equipment thus reducing the risks of home accidents.
  • They also have an information library that is available to both referring agents and families.

Referrals for the service must be made through an approved agent – Health Visitor, Social Worker, etc.

Families are visited in their own home to ensure that the equipment loaned is suitable for the stage of their child’s development. A wide range of equipment is available.

The Carefree Kids Advice and Information Centre is open daily and allows families to drop in on an informal basis. There is a wide range of leaflets and publications on home and child safety issues.

They also sell, at reduced cost, smaller safety items – socket covers, cupboard catches, etc.

This Centre is based at 70 High Street, Tranent, EH33 1HH.  Telephone 01875 619605.

There is also a toy library open to all families living within East Lothian.  It is stocked with a wide range of educational and stimulating toys for children from birth to 5 years.Carefree Kids also offer First Aid for Children courses, depending on securing additional funding. Parents completing this course will obtain a certificate valid for 3 years along with a First Aid manual.

They can attend Baby Clinics with a display and information on child and home safety issues.

For further information contact Paula Edmond,Project Manager,1 Civic Square,Tranent,East Lothian,EH33 1LH.
Tel. (01875) 616618  Fax. (01875) 614505  E-mail: Paula Edmond

Free resources

Ideas bookletCAPT have loads of free, downloadable resources to help you run all your activities and events for Child Safety Week 2012.

The downloadable ideas booklet has everything you need to run successful Child Safety Week activities and events including six steps to planning your activities, success stories to inspire you and competitions and quizzes.

Download the ideas booklet

Download either the interactive online PDF or download the printable version below.

Interactive ideas booklet

Ideas booklet

Printable ideas booklet

Ideas booklet

More resources

To download the quizzes and competitions separately, visit the pages below.

  • Quizzes: download wordsearches and child safety quizzes.
  • Competitions: download quizzes for children with some great prizes to be won.
  • Poster: download the A3 Child Safety Week poster

Recycle Week reminds us all of the need to be recycle more.

We have only been using plastic bottles for 65 years, yet a staggering 15 million of plastic bottles are used daily – and less than half of them get recycled.

East Lothian Recycling box collection

Currently over 95% of households in East Lothian have access to the fortnightly recycling box collection. Each household covered by the collection is provided with at least two recycling boxes:

 Green box  Blue box
 glass bottles and jars  paper (unwanted mail)
 food and drink cans  cardboard
 plastic bottles, pots, tubs, trays, tops & straws  envelopes (including windowed envelopes)
 empty aerosol cans & clean aluminium foil  telephone directories and Yellow Pages
 magazines, brochures and leaflets
 wrapping paper

Recycling box covers are also provided and these should be secured to the boxes by feeding the ties through the holes in the handle of box.

Collection day

You can check your collection dates online and download your recycling calendar by typing in your postcode and selecting your address.

Please present your boxes, with covers, on the kerbside by 7am on the day of collection:

  • use the covers to make sure the contents are secure
  • stack the blue box on top of the green box

Extra and replacement boxes and covers

Extra boxes are available to households that have too much material to fit into the boxes provided, but firstly please squash cans and plastics if you need more room.

Extra or replacement box covers are also available at Local Area Offices or by contacting Waste Services.

Missed collections

If you put the wrong items in your recycling box then the collection crew will leave them in your box after they have emptied it. If they are not able to separate the wrong items from the correct ones then they will leave the entire box unemptied. They should also leave you a yellow note to explain what they have left and why.

If you have presented your recycling boxes at the kerbside by 7am on the correct collection day and they have not been emptied, please contact Verdant, who carry out the collection on East Lothian’s behalf, on 0845 270 2880.

Assisted collections

If you would like to request an assisted collection, please contact Verdant, who carry out the collection on East Lothian’s behalf, on 0845 270 2880.

Collections from flats

If you live in a flat and are able to store a set of recycling boxes, without storing them in a communal hallway or stairwell, then you can take part in the recycling box collection. We are currently piloting the use of communal recycling banks for blocks of flats.

Properties not covered by the collection

If the recycling box collection does not cover your property, then the rural recycling bin collection will.

Collections on public holidays

Recycling collections are carried out as normal on most public holidays, with the exception of Christmas day, Boxing day, 1st & 2nd January.  Please make every effort to present your boxes at your usual collection point by 7am on public holidays, as collections may take place earlier than normal.  Collection arrangements for over the festive period will be advertised on this web site and in the local press during December.

Recycling centres locations and opening hours

The sites are located at:

Kinwegar Recycling Centre
A199 Haddington Road (near Wallyford Toll)
EH21 8JU
Dunbar Community Recycling Centre
Spott Road Industrial Estate
EH42 1RD
North Berwick Recycling Centre
Heugh Brae
North Berwick
EH39 5PS
Macmerry Recycling Centre
Macmerry Industrial Estate
EH33 1RD

Both Kinwegar and Dunbar Recycling Centres have a raised area so you can deposit material into the skips without climbing stairs. Please follow the one way systems at each site.

The sites operate seven days a week and are open as follows:

  • Summer (1st April to 30th September) 8.30am to 6.30pm
  • Winter (1st October to 31st March) 8.30am to 4.15pm

What can I take to a Recycling Centre?

 green garden waste  textiles and shoes  flourescent tubes
 cardboard  vegetable oil  household batteries
 scrap metal  engine oil  television and computer monitors
 rubble  gas cylinders  small electrical appliances
 solid timber  car batteries  fridge-freezers
 paper, light cardboard, envelopes and Yellow Pages  liquid food and drink cartons (Tetra-paks)  plastic bottles
 green, clear and brown glass  books  CD’s, DVD’s, video and audio tapes
 steel and aluminium cans and clean foil

The Centres also have facilities to deposit excess household waste, but this has to be separated into two different skips:

  • carpets, mattresses and sofas go in one skip, which is currently sent to landfill
  • the other skip is for mixed household waste, which is sent to be sorted; so anything that can be usefully recycled is removed before the rest is sent to landfill

Vans and trailers

If you intend to take waste to a Recycling Centre using a van or a trailer please take proof of address with you, for example a Council Tax bill, to show the attendant that you live in the area.  In addition, if you are using a hire van, please take the hire paperwork with you to show to the attendant.  We ask for these items to make sure that only waste produced in East Lothian is deposited at the Centres and that waste from a business is identified and dealt with accordingly.

Business users

Business users must present their SEPA Waste Carriers registration (where applicable) on arrival and complete a waste transfer note in order to deposit waste at a Recycling Centre.  Kinwegar and Dunbar Recycling Centres accept waste from businesses through a separate entrance, which is equipped with a weighbridge so business waste can be accurately weighed and charged for.

Other ways of recycling!


The Freecycle East Lothian group is open to all who want to “recycle” that special something rather than throw it away. Whether it’s a chair, a fax machine, piano or an old door, feel free to post it. Or maybe you’re looking to acquire something yourself? Nonprofit groups are also welcome to participate too. One main rule: everything posted must be free. This group is part of The Freecycle Network, a not-for-profit organization and a movement of people interested in keeping good stuff out of landfills.


Borders Scrap Store deals in a fantastic range of unwanted materials that would otherwise go to landfill: buttons, cardboard, carpet squares, paint, wallpaper, wool and much more. Anything that can be used in arts, crafts and play will be considered, whether from local industries, businesses, households or individuals.

Perhaps you’re a company wanting to get rid of old wallpaper samples, or a dressmaker wanting to dispose of surplus fabrics. Either way, Borders Scrap Store would be delighted to hear from you. Donations can be collected although smaller items are usually left at the Selkirk and Musselburgh shops.

Member organisations pay an annual fee and can buy materials at its stores in Selkirk and Musselburgh, or from a van delivery service that operates in East Lothian, the Scottish Borders and other parts of Southern Scotland.

Charity Shops

Scotland’s charity shops are an essential part of our communities.

  • They play a vital role in waste prevention
  • raise millions of pounds for good causes each year
  • provide a huge range of volunteering opportunities.

You can download the Edinburgh Charity Shop and Reuse Map here or see a list of East Lothian charity shops here.

Rag Bag Scheme

The ‘Rag Bag’ recycling scheme has been developed to provide regular fundraising for schools, clubs, nurseries and various organisations UK Wide.

The scheme increases awareness about textile recycling and by increasing recycling rates we can help the environment by ensuring less material goes to landfill.

The scheme is completely FREE, and your school, club or organisation will be paid for every kg recycled.

Even more information!

Changeworks exists to improve quality of life and to protect the environment.  They are behind the excellent publication “Too Good To Waste” – available online here and Edinburgh Charity Shop and Reuse Map.


(via Learning through Landscapes)

Water is an intriguing and magical substance and a brilliant resource for learning, especially outdoors. Children are drawn to it and love playing with it! Water offers an incredibly wide range of experiences that motivate, fascinate, excite and satisfy young explorers. By giving children direct experiences of harvesting, using and conserving water, you can build in them a sense of care, respect and understanding of this precious resource.

We hope that you’ll enjoy making use of the ideas below and we’d love you to show us what you get up to! You can send news of your own activity, preferably with pictures, to or even upload your own pictures to the National School Grounds Week Facebook page.

Resources for Early Years

Waste not, want not – conserving water
We can’t take water for granted. Looking at ways of conserving water will encourage children to understand the value of water.

picIt’s elemental – water in the environment
Water is vital for life. Use these activities to explore the properties of water, and at the same time support their understanding of their world.

Splash happy – having fun with water
Water offers lots of opportunity for creative fun. Use these activities to get children problem solving and developing physically through music and dance.

Resources for Schools

Waste not, want not – conserving water
Looking at ways of conserving water will not only help your school grounds become more self sufficient, but also support curriculum subjects such as science and design and technology.

It’s elemental – water in the environment
Your grounds can offer children lots of opportunities for exploring the value of water, whether it’s watching how plants thrive or perish, or constructing a river and exploring how the flow impacts on river banks and vegetation.

Feel the force – water as an energy source
picUse these activities to encourage children to understand the value of water as a power source – for good and bad – and at the same time support curriculum subjects such as history, science, geography and maths.

Splash happy – getting creative with water
Use these activities to get creative, encourage children to understand the value of water – and at the same time support curriculum subjects such as science, maths, music and dance.

If you’ve enjoyed using these resources why not have a look at other support resources and lesson ideas for teaching outdoors by searching for ‘FREE’ in the resources library.

If you’re after something specific for your summer term curriculum, search through our library – or email to see how we can help.

If you are looking for childcare in East Lothian, take a look at the Scottish Childcare website (part of the Scottish Families website, which is funded by the Scottish Government)

The International Level Crossing Awareness Day is a joint commitment continuing from the success of the first European Level Crossing Awareness Day held on 25th June 2009 in 28 countries raising public awareness on the dangers of misbehaviour at level crossings.

Level crossing accidents account for only 1.2% of road deaths but 29% of all rail fatalities based on European statistics. Road and rail organisations from participating countries acknowledged their shared responsibility to deal with this issue by organising safety events to develop public awareness and safe behaviour at and around level crossings


Banner ImageTrackoff is Britain’s rail industry initiative to help educate children and teenagers about safe conduct on the railway.

Millions of young people live close to a railway line or use the railway to travel to school, to visit friends or to go on holiday.

Some are drawn to play on the railway; some feel like messing about.

All need to understand the dangers and consequences of playing on or misbehaving on the railway.

Latest Teaching Resource (free download)

Other Teacher Packs (free download)

Free Teaching Resources (free downloads)

Download classroom activities, assembly ideas, lesson plans and other teaching resources. The resources have been validated by a panel of teachers and education consultants for National and Scottish Curriculum. Read more…

Trackoff Shop

A selection of resources, such as leaflets and booklets, is available for purchasing at the Trackoff Shop. Read more…

Where Are the Dangers?

Learn about the risks and consequences of playing on the railway. Read more…