John Muir Birthplace celebrates visitor milestone
John Muir’s Birthplace, Dunbar celebrated their 200,000 visitor welcoming preschool children from Cherrytrees Nursery, Dunbar. To mark the occasion a 200,000 banner the nursery had made for the occasion was displayed.
Since opening in 2003, John Muir’s Birthplace has maintained a Visit Scotland five star visitor attraction and Gold status Green Tourism Business Scheme grading attracting regular local visitors, tourists from across the UK and overseas. Visitors from the USA are particularly keen to visit the birthplace of conservation and the National Park movement.
Special guests have included John Muir descendants; Ellen Wong, Principal Officer of the US Consulate in Scotland; Prince Edward, Prince Charles and television presenters Michael Portilio from Great British Railway Journeys and David Harper from Antiques Road Trip.
John Muir's life and work has inspired people all over the world. He emigrated to America when he was 10 years old leaving Dunbar on the North British Railway which had arrived in Dunbar just three years earlier in 1846. The family settled in Wisconsin. John left home in his twenties to study at Wisconsin University before setting out on his 1,000 mile walk from Indiana to the Gulf of Mexico. John settled in California and devoted his life to campaigning to protect wild places.
The Dunbar birthplace of the pioneering conservationist is a stunning interpretative centre highlighting the work and achievements of this remarkable man. The Birthplace team run regular family drop-in activities during weekends and school holidays as well as delivering activities for visiting school groups.
Kerry Lugton, Manager for Cherrytrees Nursey said “children from the nursery love the chance to walk along the High Street to visit John Muir’s Birthplace. The friendly staff always have something new to show them and they really enjoy the drop in craft activities”.
Jim Goodfellow, Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing said “the team at the Birthplace are justifiably proud of this achievement, which is testament to their commitment and hard work in communicating the story and legacy of John Muir. We are delighted that the children from Cherry Trees Nursery will be able to share the occasion with us.”
Duncan Smeed, Chair of John Muir Birthplace Charitable Trust said “2020 is an exciting year as we focus our exhibitions and activities on the climate emergency. Birthplace staff and the Trust are working together with the Friends of John Muir’s Birthplace and with other groups in Dunbar to focus on John Muir’s role as an environmental activist and successful campaigner and his relevance for our situation today. From April onwards the Friends’ exhibition and the programme of events organised with the help of these other groups will set the scene for a journey of community-led change away from high resource use and high C02 emissions, towards a more resilient community with a diverse and local economy and a vibrant culture with an equitable, sustainable future for all.”
John Muir’s Birthplace, 126 High Street, Dunbar, East Lothian, EH42 1JJ.
April to October open 6 days 10 – 5, Sunday 12 – 5. November to March closed Mon and Tue