Tranent Wombles are a constituted community group trying to make our town litter free and wildlife friendly. We started as a litter picking group during lockdown and have more recently started planting for wildlife and working with children and young people.

We want to build on Tranent’s rich heritage and pride in being a ‘belter’ – hence our strapline ‘The Green Belters’!

Please get in touch if you would like to be involved in any of our work. You can contact us on or you can find our latest news on our Facebook page

Litter Picking

Tranent Wombles was originally set up to tackle litter as we came out of lockdown. We noticed a huge problem in our streets, along our main roads and in shared public areas.

You can either get involved during our group litter picks or we can loan you equipment so that you can look after the streets where you live. Our group litter picks take place on a Sunday morning from 10.30 and are a great way to make a difference and meet like-minded individuals. We are currently working with corporate volunteers on a monthly basis and we work with other groups like the beavers, Church Eco-group and sports clubs. If you have a group or club who’d like to do their bit, please get in touch!

Since starting in November 2020 Tranent Wombles have removed 4,2566 bags of litter from in and around Tranent (correct as of October 2023). Some of this is historic litter that has gathered over years if not decades, some is litter dropped more recently. We want to work to change this behaviour and reduce littering but in the meantime we will keep going.

We advertise litter picking events and encourage each other’s individual efforts on our Facebook page. Please check us out –  

Green Belters Project

Following the success of the Pollinator Parklet and the Saloo Bed on Lindores Drive, the Wombles wanted to continue our work to make Tranent more environmentally friendly for the people and animals living here.  Thinking about developing a green corridor, we identified a patch of land along the road at Foresters Park and approached East Lothian Council.  The Amenities Department were as helpful as ever, so we then teamed up with Heugh Community Garden and East Lothian Play Association to make an application to the Tyne and Esk fund.  The Green Belters project was awarded £10k by Scottish Ministers in conjunction with the Tyne and Esk Action Group to develop a forest garden, work with schools and purchase bins and litterpicking equipment.  

The patch of land at Foresters Park had originally been part of people’s large back gardens but was now grass monoculture.  Forest gardens are a dense and diverse but low maintenance type of planting, usually involving food production, and we liked this approach.  It would make a small contribution to increasing Tranent tree canopy cover (at 16%, the second lowest cover in East Lothian after Prestonpans).  And growing fruit and nuts would also be a useful resource and link to Tranent’s rich fruit-growing history.

We held an on-site consultation event on 26/11/23 and agreed a design (see pics).

With the Pollinator Parklet’s log stump edge being so popular for children to walk along, it was decided that a log stump pathway should be included, as well as a place to sit with an accessible path.  A willow tunnel leading to a wildflower meadow was also planned.  For the planting, we went mainly for locally supplied native varieties of trees, shrubs and herbs.  Strawberries and primroses will provide ground cover and we included local varieties of apple, such as East Lothian Pippin and Bloody Ploughman. 

Work onsite began on 9/1/24 with East Lothian Council preparing the path (see pics).

We then held a community event to lay the log stump pathway on 16/2/24 (see pics).

A willow weaving workshop making a willow tunnel and willow crafts took place with artist Natalie Taylor on 1/3/24 (see pics).  The willow was donated by head gardener Kerry Lyall at Archerfield Walled Garden.

The first main planting took place as a community event run by Fruit Trees of Midlothian on 15/3/24, which also provided most of the trees.  Shrubs and herbs were supplied at a reduced rate by R&B Nursery at Roslin. 

Keeping the rustic style, we worked with specialist East Lothian artists and craftspeople to design bespoke wooden pieces.  Robin Wood of WildChild Designs made the seating, sign and children’s gate and Hamish Darrah made the cleft hazel gates using wood from a restored coppice at Tyninghame.  

Tranent Wombles would like to thank residents and groups for their interest and ongoing support for the Green Belters project, including Tranent Juniors for the use of their hut.

Planting for Biodiversity and Amenity

Working with East Lothian Council (ELC), we adopted two small plots on Lindores Drive and named them the Pollinator Parklet and the Saloo Bed. The Parklet was a triangle of unloved land with loads of potential – covered in patchy grass with stone walls on 2 sides. The Saloo Bed was a brick bed that had been left to get full of weeds and was a magnet for litter and anti-social behaviour. ELC were fundamental in helping us prepare the Parklet for planting for rotavating the site and removing the stumps and laying our beautiful path that takes you through the Parklet.

Pollinator Parklet

We purchased tree ‘whips’ from the Woodland Trust and herbaceous perennials from MacPlants. The following trees were chosen as they provide pollen, berries and nuts over the calendar year:

 – Blackthorn produces creamy-coloured flowers and blossoms around March.

 – Crab apple trees grow sweetly scented blossoms in April to May.

 – Rowan’s creamy-white flowers emerge from May to June.

 – Hawthorn produces white flowers that appear from around April to June.

 – Dog rose has large pink or white flowers that blossom from May to August.

 – Hazel trees grow yellow male catkins and small bud-like female flowers.

Lots of people were involved in planting these up. In spring 2023 Wombles volunteers planted trees and flowers with an emphasis on native species to encourage bees and other pollinators. We have a beautiful bench that is enclosed within a natural arbour.

Our Planting

Saloo Bed

The Saloo Bed (so called because of its position between the Salvation Army Shop and the public loos) was designed in a naturalistic style to provide an oasis of calm in contrast to the busy adjacent thoroughfare along side. We wanted to create a garden which would complement the majestic birch tree growing behind the black security fence using plants which would establish quickly.  It was important that plants used were robust, drought tolerant but fragrant and beautiful to look at.  

List of plants:

  • Honeysuckle (Lonicera)
  • Russian Sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia)
  • Purple Sage (Salvia officanalis ‘Purpurascens’)
  • Yarrow (Achlliea ‘Moonshine’) 
  • Aliums
  • Feverfew (Tanacetum Parthenium) (Donated)
  • Climbing spinach (Donated)
  • Globe Thistle (Echinops bannaticus ‘Taplow Blue’)
  • Gay Feather (Liatris Spicata ‘Floxistan Violet)
  • Turkish Sage (Phlomis Russeliana)
  • Lungwort (Pulmonaria angustifolia ‘Azurea’ )
  • Corn Flower (Centaurea ‘John Coutts’)
  • Firehorn ‘Orange Glow’ (Pyracantha ’Orange Glow’) (Donated)


The Tranent Wombles rely on a hard-working, resilient bunch of volunteers. Volunteers that come in all ages and from all over Tranent. Some volunteers help every week, some less often but all of them get involved as they want to make a difference to the town they live in. Sometimes its hard work being a Womble but all of us find it rewarding and are proud of the difference we make.

Volunteers get involved with litter picking, planting, visiting schools, committee meetings, fundraising, looking after our website, telling stories about our changing world…it’s a long list! If you have a particular skill you think could help us please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you. Why not email us at

Funders and Supporters

We are really grateful to all our funders, fundraisers and sponsors for all the kind donations. Thanks in particular go to Iain Wood Engineering for our wonderful Wombling Free bench, Derek and Alastair for the log stumps from North Esk farm, Caledonian Horticulture and MacPlants for discounted plants. The Heugh Community Garden volunteers made the arbour and helped lay the stumps. Thanks to the Fraser Centre for their support and encouragement!

The next generation!

Tranent Wombles are linking with local primary and secondary schools and are passionate about linking with the next generation. We have supported litter picking in school grounds and spoken to children and young people about the importance of looking after our town and our planet using storytelling as the medium to engage.

We also had a poster design competition – one of the results is below. I’m sure you’ll agree it’s fantastic!

Our very own Womble (and Church Eco-Group member) Russell has used his storytelling skills at the Heugh Community Garden.

We have worked closely with the East Lothian Play Association (ELPA) and carried out activities alongside their successful Spark in the Park events at Lindores Drive. This has allowed children to get involved with planting and explore our Parklet – our stumps are a wonderful play resource as well as providing a bug friendly home!