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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. VI


Newhaven.] FISHER FEUD WITH PRESTONPANS 301 men of the town of Edinburgh, and Lady Greenwich, on one part, and certain fishermen of Prestonpans on the other. The point in dispute is certain oyster scalps, to which each party claims an exclusive right. Accusations of encroachment were mutually given and retorted. At dredging, when the parties met, much altercation and abusive language took place-bloody encounters ensued, but only occurs in the Tmendas, like hawkings, huntings, or other words of style. ? After various representations to the Judge- Admiral, his lordship pronounced an interlocutor, ordaining both parties to produce their prescriptive rights to their fishings, and prohibited them from dredging oysters in any of the scalps in dispute till the issue of the cause. November 10, 1786, in virtue of which his lordship was infeft, interaZia, in the oyster scalps in question. They also condescended on a charter granted by King James VI., in 1585, to the town of Burntisland, which is on record, and which they say establishes their right. They further contend that the magistrates have produced no proper titles to prove their exclusive right to the scalps they have let in tack to the Newhaven fishermen. ?The charter of King James VI. was resigned ,by the town in the time of Charles I,, and the new charter granted by the latter, gives no right to the oyster scalps in dispute. The word ?fishings,? in was abolished in defiance of the principles of the Treaty of Union) in favour of the Newhaven men; but each party had to pay their own expenses. So far back as 1789 we begin to read of the encroachments made by the sea in this quarter, and probably of what was afterwards so long known as the ? Man-trap,? as the Advertiser mentions that ?? a young lady coming from Newhaven to Leith fell over the precipice on the side of the sea,?? and that within six weeks the same catastrophe had befallen four others, ?? the road being so narrow and dangerous that people at night run a great risk of their lives?
Volume 6 Page 301
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