Gosford Estate
Saturday 29th May 2021

Gosford is a privately-owned estate stretching between the East Lothian villages of Longniddry and Aberlady.  The area contains 18th-Century Gosford House and its park in the centre, sections of farmland, and surrounding deciduous woodland. The event will stay away from the House itself, the parkland contains many interesting features such as ornamental ponds, ha-has, a mausoleum, a grotto, and an ex-POW camp!

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

Type of terrain:

This photograph was taken in the summertime — there’s no bracken at the moment!

This event will use the eastern half of our map, which boasts only a few contour features, but has a complex network of paths and ditches in the northern part, and more traditional mixed woodland elsewhere.

The woods are quite runnable at this time of year. A few nettles are just beginning to show, and some of the more open areas have scattered small brambles (the courses try to avoid these).  The ground was quite muddy underfoot during the wet weather, but is now drying out rapidly.

Other Users:
There are several private dwellings on the Estate.
Please observe all out-of-bounds areas strictly, throughout the day.

Dogs:
Dogs must be on leads.
Be aware that the usual East Lothian wildlife (deer and hares) are common.
See also the note about blue-green “algae”, which can be toxic to dogs.

Toilets:
Nearest toilets are at Gosford Farm Bothy Shop.

Location:

Nearest town: Aberlady
Grid Reference: NT 453 782
Postcode: EH32 0PX
Directions:
We are parking near the location below, with entry through the nearby gate from the A198, 1km south of the North Lodge (which is the “official” entrance to Gosford House).

Parking is free.
It is also possible to get to the event by bus (Edinburgh-North Berwick service from East Coast Buses; use the “Pleasance” stop in Aberlady, then close your eyes when walking from the Bothy to assembly!) or by train to Longniddry (enter by the West Lodge gate for a pleasant 3km walk through the woods in the southern part of the Estate).
To make a day of it, the excellent Gosford Bothy Farm Shop and Café is a 1km walk from assembly (although that walk will take you through the competition area, so if you visit the cafe before your run, you might want to go round by road instead; you may also wish to know that last food orders are at 3:30pm sharp!)

Registration & Start Times

Registration:

This will be online only in advance of the day.

Start and Finish:

The start and finish will be close to registration.
Start times will be probably be from 1:30pm to 3:00pm.

Courses Close:

The courses will close at 4:00pm, so if you have not completed your course by then, you should stop and return to assembly.  You must report to the Download point, whether you complete the course or not, so that we know you are not lost or injured in the woods!

Course Information

Map:

Sample of Gosford Estate map

A sample of the Gosford Estate map

Scale TBC with 2.5m contours.

A few notes on the mapping:

  • Ditches: although they are all technically crossable as mapped, you probably won’t want to choose routes that cross the ditches shown as continuous lines, as they are quite wide, with steep sides, and may be a bit deep after rain. The ones shown as broken lines are in general fairly easily crossed.  In any case, courses are planned so that you shouldn’t need to cross many, or perhaps any, of them except via bridges.
  • Vegetation:
    • The rhododendrons have grown a little since some areas were first mapped.
    • There is windfall, here and there, which is not shown.
    • Not every holly bush is on the map!

Timing:

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

Courses:
Courses are TBC.  Course lengths (all with negligible climb) are as follows…

Course Length Difficulty Map Scale
White Very easy
Yellow Easy
Orange Medium
Light Green Medium to Hard
Green Hard

More details about the colour coding is available on the Scottish Orienteering website.

Entry Charges

Members Non members
Seniors £4 n/a
Juniors £1.50 n/a
Parent and Child
(one parent with one child)
£2.50 n/a
Larger Family Groups
(one or more children accompanied by one or more adults)
£3 n/a
Pair of Seniors £5 n/a
Pair of Juniors
(no accompanying adults)
£2 n/a

Safety and Risk

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

All courses run very close to water features of various kinds (ponds, ditches): it is impossible to avoid these and still have sensible courses, so please be aware of this when deciding whether to accompany juniors or not.  Other potential hazards (which the courses aim to mitigate where possible, especially for the juniors) include:

  • A number of high sunken walls (“ha-has”), are up to two metres high from one side, and are almost invisible from the other.  Some of these have water at the foot.  They are all marked uncrossable.
  • Piles of logs – please remind young folk not to climb on them.
  • Blue-green algae is present in the ponds, which can be toxic.
  • All courses make some use of estate tracks. During planning visits, the planner reports seeing a vehicle only once, and sight-lines are good, but it is possible even juniors might encounter a car or van.
  • Stone monuments – please remind juniors not to push or lean on them.
  • There are a few geese living on the ponds – please remind youngsters not to approach them.
  • There are wooden bridges which may be wet if it rains.
  • There are some abandoned farm buildings just outside the event area.
  • There are a couple of electric fences in the area (but you would have to go out of your way to touch them).

A couple of standard advisories:

  • As there are deer and other wildlife in the area, please wash your hands before eating, and check for ticks after running.
  • There may be dog-walkers whose dogs are not as well-controlled as they should be, and junior runners should be advised accordingly.

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.

Privacy

When entering our events your name may appear in the results section of this website or in newspaper reports.

Acknowledgements

Many thanks to Wemyss and March Estates for granting us the opportunity to map and run in this area.

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