Athelstaneford | Townscapes, Buildings & Landscapes of Distinction

Of the two principal mansion houses, Kilduff House had changed hands once or twice since it was one of the Kinloch properties (and an RAF officers’ mess in the war). Gilmerton House itself and parts of the original estate continued remarkably in the Kinloch family, the ‘lairds’ of the parish, although it was 80 years since the estate village of Athelstaneford and some of the farms were sold off in some 70 or so lots after the first world war.

The East Fortune airfield was an entire listed ancient monument because of the completeness of its second world war remains and ambience (and some first world war corrugated iron huts also survived among the former hospital buildings). That didn’t stop the regular Sunday flea market (which began c1976, though latterly was a lesser attraction), and microlight flying and the occasional bout of motorcycle racing on parts of the old runways. The Museum of Flight (opened 1971), part of the Museums of Scotland, occupied most of the hangars and site and afforded of course a visitor attraction while performing a very serious museum role.