Binning Wood
Saturday 27th March 2021

Binning Wood  Saturday 27th March 2021

Open runnable woodland

Many thanks to everyone who took part today and contributed to an optimistic return to orienteering in 2021. This was our first local event after the relaxation of the most recent CoVid19 restrictions. It took place one day short of a full year from its original scheduled date last year.

With many restrictions still in place this event was only open to current paid-up members of ELO who live within East Lothian. But although several members were debarred by living outside the county there was a full take-up of the 70 places available.

Special thanks to Godfrey Beddard who planned the courses including a proper Green which would have been a stern test at any time – and with most of us rather rusty after the lay-off it was a real challenge. Many thanks also to Sheila and Robin Strain who organised a way for the event to be as normal as possible while observing all the restrictions imposed by the current CoVid situation.


Advance Information

Our next local event will be held at Binning Wood on Saturday 27th March 2021.

This is our first local event after the relaxation of the most recent CoVid19 restrictions. It comes one day short of a full year from its original scheduled date last year.

With many restrictions still in place this event is only open to current paid-up members of ELO who live within East Lothian. If you have never joined or your membership has lapsed you must join or renew before entering.

Type of event:

Local event in the East of Scotland Orienteering Association (ESOA) series.


Binning Wood was originally planted in the 1700s and was almost completely felled during the second world war to build Mosquito fighter-bombers. It was replanted with conifers and beech and has a complex network of rides, paths and ditches which can be disorientating to the unwary.  Although much of the site had been overrun with rhododendron, work is ongoing to clear some of the site which has dramatically improved the runnability.  In many areas visibility has improved and hidden ditches have reappeared, although the brashings will slow you down.

The map was updated for the Scottish Relay Championships in 2017 and shows the ride network radiating out from three large clearings along with an area at north of the map which is a green burial site – the Binning Memorial Wood. This area is marked on all maps as out of bounds to orienteers.

It is a flat woodland which is characterised by three large circular clearings. These clearings have up to 13 paths leading out of them and will challenge your navigation…

Open circular clearing in Binning Wood

Binning Wood has suffered in the past from being overgrown with rhododendrons but there has been much clearing in recent years leading to areas which are very open and runnable:

2021 update from the planner and mapper

Rhododendron regrowth

Rhododendron regrowth

1) No benches and signposts are marked on the map
2) There are many ‘wigwams’ made of cut down branches, also many large piles of branches made after cutting down rhododendrons and none of these are marked on the map.
3)  There are a few large, temporary hides, usually well hidden away from tracks, and none of these are marked.
4) The general area is dry but marshy areas marked on the map are very wet (unlike previous years).
5) Due to cutting down Rhododendrons, many parts of the area will be distinctly unfamiliar.

Other Users:

The area is well used by the general public. Please respect their right to be there at the same time as you are orienteering. You must not enter any out of bounds areas.


The area is used by dog walkers so dogs are welcome.


Nearest town/village: East Linton
Postcode: EH40 3DU
Grid Ref: NT 593 801


Leave the A1 at either Haddington (if coming from the west; take the second Haddington junction, known as “Abbotsview” and signed “Haddington/East Linton”) or Dunbar (if coming from the south) and then follow the A199 (“the old A1”) to its junction with the A198 signposted North Berwick. Follow the A198 for 2 straight kilometres to Tyninghame village. Turn left onto the B1407 and take the next right after 1 km onto the minor road signposted Newbyth and Lawhead. Go north for 1.5 km to the south-west corner of Binning Wood.


Parking for cars will be in this car park and the two car parks further north as well as along the side of this minor road.  There is no charge for parking. Please do not park on grass verges belonging to homes near the south west corner of the wood.

Registration & Start Times


There is no entry on the day. Entry is only open to ELO members who live in East Lothian.

You must enter in advance using this link and will be required to read and agree to special arrangements in place for CoVid-19 distancing.

Most entrants will not need to pay as ELO is offering free entry to our first two events of the 2021 for renewing members who did not get value from their 2020 membership. Anyone not in this category will be contacted separately regarding payment arrangements.

Start and Finish:

  • The Start is about 100 metres from the car-parking and Registration
  • Start times are from 1:30pm to 3:00pm – you must stick to your allocated slot to avoid any bunching of competitors around the Start area
  • Finish is adjacent to Registration / Download
  • Courses close at 4:30pm.

Courses Close:

Please report to the Download by 4:30pm, even if you have not completed your course.
Controls will be brought in from 4:30pm.


There are no public toilets in the immediate area.  The nearest public toilets are in East Linton.

Course Information


The map is printed at 1:7500 with 2.5m contours.


SportIdent (SI) electronic timing will be used – we will have SIs for hire free of charge but there is a £30 charge if lost.


There will be White, Yellow, Orange and Green courses.
Provisional course lengths are as follows…

Course Length Difficulty
White 1.4 km Very easy navigation
Controls are all on paths
Yellow 2.3 km Easy navigation
Controls all on or visible from paths
Orange 3.4 km Medium difficulty navigation
Controls are generally quite close to paths
Green 4.4 km Hard Navigation
Controls are hard to find and to reach
More details about the colour coding is available on the Scottish Orienteering website.


Most of the White course follows good paths but they are uneven and have muddy sections which may be tricky for buggies and pushchairs.


Godfrey Beddard

Safety and Risk

A comprehensive risk assessment has been carried out by the organisers, but participants take part at their own risk and are responsible for their own safety during the event.

There are large piles of cut logs along some tracks. There are not mapped and must not be climbed on. There are none near to the White or Yellow courses.

As with many woods in Scotland, there are ticks present in Binning Wood so you are advised to check carefully and promptly remove any ticks you may find to reduce the risk of infections.

A separate Covid19 risk assessment has also been drawn up and the club’s Covid officer will be in attendance to check that its provisions are observed by all taking part.

Medical Conditions:

If you, or anyone in your group (including juniors), have a medical condition that first-aiders or health professionals should know about in the event of accident or illness during the course of the event please print off the Medical Form, complete it fully and bring it along to the event.   You should complete a separate copy for each individual who has a medical condition.  Please leave the completed Medical Form at Event Registration.  If it is not in a labelled sealed envelope, it will be put in one and will be opened only in an emergency.  It will be shredded immediately after the event if you do not claim it back.


When entering our events your name will appear in the results section of this website and may appear in newspaper reports.
We may also take photographs at the event for publicity purposes – please let us know if you do not want us to use your photograph in this way.
Read our privacy policy.

Binning Wood


Binning Wood

Tagged on:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.