Granton Primary School

1940s and 1950s

A Granton School Class  -  Photographed around 1950

A school class at Granton School around 1950

©  Reproduced with acknowledgement to Sandra Newlands, Orkney Islands, Scotland



Thank you to Sandra Newlands, Orkney Islands, Scotland, for sending me this old photograph of a class at Granton School, which appears to have been taken in the same place as this 1962 school photo:

A school class at Granton School in 1962 ©

Sandra has a question about the photograph at the top of the page.  She writes:


"Here is a photograph of a class from Granton School, probably taken around 1950.  The teacher in this photo is now aged 86.  Do you recognise the teacher?"


Thank you to Tommy Wishart for replying, telling me:

"I'm almost certain that the teacher's name was Miss Reid."

Tommy is correct.  The name has since been confirmed.

-  Peter Stubbs




John Ross

Thank you to Joh Ross who wrote about this photo.

John wrote:

'I was a Pupil'

A school class at Granton School in the 1940s or early 1950s. ©

"The photo sent by Sandra Newlands of class at Granton School   is interesting.  I was a pupil at this time and feel almost sure I am in the picture - 7th from the left on the back row."

John Ross:  20 February, 2007




Archie Foley

Portobello, Edinburgh

Thank you to Archie Foley, Portobello, Edinburgh who wrote:


"We moved from Hawthornvale to Granton Place in 1940, and I was at Granton School from that year until Easter 1947.  There were two intakes at that time.


"The Headmaster was Mr Jamieson who was very dignified and gentlemanly and to us seemed quite elderly.

There was another male teacher called Mr Cameron but he was altogether different, younger, and not someone we wanted to get on the wrong side of. However, I think that was mostly because he had a loud voice and an intimidating manner.

Other teachers I remember teaching me were Miss Chalmers, Miss Robb and Miss Gilfillan and  Miss Wishart who had a large hearing aid.


"The Infant Mistress was a very nice lady named Miss Brown from whom we learned to read using a mixture of pictures of the shapes of letters and phonetics.  Later on we learned to spell by rote and had to learn words at home for testing in school. We also had multiplication tables drummed into us and frequent sessions of mental arithmetic."


"About a year or so before I went to secondary school, Mr Calder, arrived and he restarted the school football team, only for boys of course. In Primary 7 some of us were chosen to go for swimming lessons, boys one afternoon and girls another.

 This meant going to Broughton School where Miss Docherty took us in the little swimming pool.  After lunch we were given a couple of tram tokens each and then dismissed to walk down to Granton Square and board the number 8 or 9 for Rodney Street.

After that, it was a walk up Broughton Road to the school and we made our own way there and home again. There was no adults with us. This wouldn't be allowed now but as far as I know nobody ever came to any harm or betrayed the trust put in us."

Friday Afternoons

"Another way to get out of the classroom was to do well in tests that Mr Jamieson set at intervals. I can't recall the frequency but on some Friday afternoons he would come into the class and read out the names of those who had done well and tell the teacher to let them go home half an hour early.

This would have been in my  Primary 6 and 7 because during the war we had Friday afternoon concerts with community singing and talks in the hall, and at the end we all put a penny in the collection for war relief."

King and Queen at Granton

"Other people have mentioned the stone steps at the windows of the ground floor classrooms, the air raid shelters and the vegetable plots.

But does anyone else remember the school being taken en masse to Boswall Parkway to wave at the King and Queen going past?"

Archie Foley, Portobello, Edinburgh.




Ruth Nordhoy (née Hamilton)

Whidbey Island, Seattle, Washington, USA

Thank you to Ruth Nordhoy, Seattle, Washington, USA who included this brief comment about Granton Primary School in her recollections of Trinity Academy (1948-53)


"I've just spent a considerable time reading your web site. I couldn't tear myself away!!  

I was pleased to read the comments from:

-  Joyce Messer

-  Winifred Huff (née Mackie)

 Jim Mowat

I've remained best friends with:

-  Winifred Huff, now living in California and

 Maureen Coyle, now living in Vancouver, Canada.

A couple of years ago, we all attended a celebration of our 70th birthdays at Winnie's home."

Granton Primary School

"It's a long time since I first met Winifred Huff (née Mackie) and Maureen Coyle at Granton Primary School where we marched into class from the playground with Miss Robb playing the piano. The title of the song escapes my memory, but, of course, we had our own words for it!

I would be very happy to hear from any classmates from either Granton or Trinity Academy."

Ruth Nordhoy, Whidbey Island, Seattle, Washington, USA:  August 10, 2008

Ruth Nordhoy

If you'd like to contact Ruth, please email me, then I'll pass on your message to her.

Thank you.    - Peter Stubbs:  August 11, 2008




Archie Foley

Portobello, Edinburgh

Thank you to Archie Foley who added Granton Primary School until 1947, for writing:

Miss Robb

"I remember Miss Robb who taught my class until she left to go to Parson's Green primary school around 1945/46.   If my memory is correct she played the piano using her right hand only."

Archie Foley, Portobello, Edinburgh




John Wilson

Somerset, England

Thank you to John Wilson who wrote:

Miss Angus

"I was at Granton Primary School.  My teacher was a Miss Angus.  She was a good teacher.

She left to get married - new name Mrs Binns.  Before she was married, she lived a Ferry Road traffic lights with Miss Gilfillan."

John Wilson, Somerset, England:  February 22, 2009




Brenda Keen (née Griffin)

Suffolk, England

Thank you to Brenda Keen who wrote:

Our Class

    A school class at Granton School in the 1940s or early 1950s. ©

"I have just recognised myself in this photo.  I'm sitting in the third row, 2nd from the left.  My best friend, Kathleen Kenaway, is in the same row, 7th from the left.  We were sixteen when we last met.  I'd love to know where she is now.


"My teacher was Miss Reid.  She was well known for her liking of Maths.  My first teacher was Miss Rose.  She was a wonderful teacher - so kind.  I have a lot to thank her for."


"I have very fond memories of Granton Primary.  We were never allowed to go near the vegetable garden, but I can remember sometimes running in and out when we played 'Chasey'  Well, it was something different to do at Playtime, ha.

We girls played 'Ledgy' with a ball.  There was a ledge that ran along the front of the school wall.  We also used to exchange scraps at playtime.  I remember there was one girl who did the splits.  How I envied her."

School Grounds

"I remember climbing over the iron fencing (of course, it was not allowed) to get to the Library, rather than having to run all the way round he outer part of the school ground to get to the open gte and the outside toilets."


"It would be great to share this information with anyone who may remember.  I have lived in the South of England, but I come back home to Edinburgh every September."

Brenda Keen (née Griffin), Suffolk:  November 18+19, 2010

Reply to Brenda

If you'd like to send a reply to Brenda, please email me, then I'll pass it on to her.   Thank you.

Peter Stubbs:  November 23, 2010




Brenda Keen (née Griffin)

Suffolk, England

Thank you to Brenda Keen for writing again with more memories of Granton School.

Brenda wrote:


"I had three younger brothers who were with me at Granton before I left to go to Ainslie Park.  They were Michael, Alan and Brian who is in this 1962 photo.  Sadly, I have lost all three."

'The Band of Hope'

"Every Friday, after school, I would have to round my brothers up and take them to the church hall next to the school for what was called 'The Band of Hope'.

I'm not sure what it was all about, but do remember having a lot of fun, all us kids running around in the hall before the meetings started.

I suppose they were trying to drum the Bible into us.   It  would be nice to know if anyone else recalls 'The Band of Hope'."

Brenda Keen (née Griffin), Suffolk:  November 25, 2010

Reply to Brenda

If you'd like to send a reply to Brenda, please email me, then I'll pass it on to her.   Thank you.

Peter Stubbs:  December 2, 2010




Eleanor Taylor (née Johnston)

Tasmania, Australia

Thank you to Eleanor Taylor (née Johnston) for posting a message in the EdinPhoto guestbook.

Eleanor wrote:

Granton View

"I grew up in Granton View and attended Granton Primary School before moving to England in 1958, when I was 8.

Both sets of Grandparents lived next door to one another in the 'view'. I believe some of the family may still stay there."

Eleanor Taylor (née Johnston), Tasmania, Australia:
Message posted in EdinPhoto guestbook:  November 29, 2010




John Fraser

Inch, Edinburgh

John Fraser replied to postings in the EdinPhoto guestbook by:

-  Connie Telfer-Smith who asked him:

 "Did you go to Royston School?"

-  Dot Walker who wrote

 "John:  you made me laugh ...""

John replied:

The Schools

Reply to Connie

"I went to Granton Primary School, along the road from Royston, 1941-48, then to Leith Academy 1948-50.  

But I remember tying my scarf in a knot and asking pupils from Royston "Scotch or Irish". Wrong answer meant a thump across the head with the hard knotted scarf."

Back then it was just a game and I got as much as I gave."

The Guides

Reply to Dot

"I'm glad to have made you laugh.  We all need a good laugh some time.  Another funny thing that happened to me when my sister, Sadie, was in the Guides.

My mother would go to my Grannie's and Sadie would have to watch me. I therefore became a guide or they would not have let me into the church hall at Granton Square Centre, just up from Granton Square.

All went well until one of the girls pushed me, and I pushed back. Bad idea. We were on the platform of the hall. She fell, so I was banned from the Guides.  So ended my short career.  I didn't think Sadie would ever forgive me. But she did.

Keep well and keep laughing. It keeps the wrinkles away."

John Fraser, Inch, Edinburgh.  Message posted in EdinPhoto guestbook on  20 March 2013, following up a message that he posted in the guestbook on 12 February 2013.



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