Dunbar nostalgia website attracts members from across world

IT began as an online tribute to their late father and his passion for local history.

Thursday, 1st March 2012, 12:06 pm

But now a Facebook page founded by two brothers which showcases nostalgic images of a Lothian seaside town has taken on a life of its own, attracting nearly 1500 members from as far afield as New Zealand, Australia and Florida.

Having launched in January, Lost Dunbar – dedicated to Ally Knox – today boasts more than 1000 pictures illustrating the rich history of the East Lothian town and documenting some of its most memorable attractions, many of which have now disappeared.

From the now-defunct al fresco swimming pool near the historic harbour to a quaint maypole festival at Winterfield Park, much of the town’s heritage has been captured for posterity.

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The page was launched by brothers Tony and Scott Knox after their 55-year-old father, pictured below, died from leukaemia three years ago.

“Dad was always into finding out about where he came from and seemed to be related to everyone in Dunbar one way or another and would bore us to death telling us about it,” said Tony, 35.

“He got himself a laptop a few years ago and it opened up a whole new world to him. Researching his family tree was a huge thing for him and it seems to go back 200 to 300 years in Dunbar.”

Ally, a former toilet attendant with East Lothian Council, battled cancer for three years.

“We found some old photos in the house and I said to my brother ‘I wonder if we should put them up on Facebook to see if someone recognises them’,” said Tony.

“That was in January and since then it’s just gone crazy. Ex-pats from Dunbar who are now living all over the world have joined up as members. I think this has given people the chance to relive where they come from.”

But it seems the heritage page is fulfilling much more than its brief – with long-lost relatives now being reunited through its pages.

“I remember one guy commented that he hadn’t seen his cousin who’d emigrated to Australia for 40 years until he came to join our Facebook group and saw pictures of her,” said Tony. Visit the site at www.facebook.com/#!/groups/330417200322086