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The Fourth Statistical Account of East Lothian

Population

By parish, from the General Registrar's office
1931 493 244M 249F
1951 463 256M 207F
1961 300 145M 155F
1971 300 192M 108F
1981 238 113M 125F
1991 139 78M 61F
2001 311 159M 152F

 

By parish, from ELDC
1991 253    
1997 (est.) 265 147M 119F
2001 NO DATA

Population figures are difficult to compare, as no two sources extract data in the same way.

Over the period, there was a substantial fall in local employment on the farms and on the estate. People no longer worked where they lived; most residents now commute to Haddington and Edinburgh.

Until c1960, as farm cottages and estate houses were occupied by families mostly connected with agriculture, there was a more 'compact' feeling - everyone was known to everyone else. There was a mix of age groups, with newly-weds in their first house to the elderly. Since 1970, with changing farms systems and fewer workers, houses became available on short let.

Here and throughout the text, Ivan Clark shares his experiences of living in the parish:

It is apparent that there are very few householders with young families.

The changing pattern of Whittingehame's population can be seen by comparing the names on the 1988 Electoral Roll, with those on that of 2000. Of the 166 names on the first, only 41 appear on the second.

Mechanisation saw the end of the long tradition of the itinerant workforce:

For a short period each autumn in the period 1945-60, Irish squads came to one or two farms for potato harvesting. [These were] usually family groups - male, female and teenaged children, staying on the farm. [Their] accommodation was very basic; [they] slept in the granary or barn, with cooking facilities in the bothy.

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