Green Jenny's Close
and Giles Street, Leith
Buildings demolished 1914
acknowledgement to Archie Foley, Joppa, Edinburgh
Site of Jenny Green's
Peter Stubbs - please contact
Photo taken: January 21, 2011
Comparison of 'demolished 1914' photo and
Jenny Green's Close
All the buildings in the foreground of the early
photo have been demolished, most or all of them about a century ago.
The land where they stood is now a car park for Farmfoods
supermarket, seen in the 2011 photo above.
Two towers on the roof of Yardheads School can be
seen in both photos.. Yardheads school was constructed in 1875-76
and enlarged in 1888 and is in Henderson Street. It has now
been converted to housing.
These two towers are near the right-hand side of
the old photo, a little higher than the wall-mounted street lamp on
Green Jenny's Close
Giles Street Area, Leith
The caption says that Green Jenny's Close was
demolished in 1914. The old maps show several narrow closes in the
vicinity of Giles Street, Leith. I don'e know which one was Green
There are three lanterns in this photo, all
Acknowledgement: Archie Foley, Joppa, Edinburgh:
January 5, 2010
This is one of a series of photos posted
onto boards in an old album that Archie Foley acquired a few years ago.
Archie believes that these are likely to be official photos that probably once belonged to Leith City
Thank you to John Hadden for sending me:
- this link
1894 map of Leith on the National Library of Scotland web site.
- an extract from this 1894 map, on which he has
marked where this photo would have been taken from.
Green Jenny's Close is the narrow lane
running down the left-hand side of the hairdressers.
Giles Street is the street running along
the front of the hairdressers and out of the photo at the lower-right
Extract from 1894 Map
with acknowledgement to John Hadden, Edinburgh
On this map:
- St Anthony's Lane is the street running
from top to bottom of the map, on the left.
- Giles Street is the street running from
top-centre to lower-right corner.
- Green Jenny's Close is the narrow land
running along the bottom of the map, linking St Anthony's Lane and Giles
"I think this photo was taken from near to the
rear of Trinity House, Leith.
This 1894 map matches the photo. It shows a building
- a urinal to the left of the
- a gated yard to the right of the
There are also streetlamps shown on the map
(with symbol 'L')
that correspond to those on the left and the right of this photo."
John Hadden, Edinburgh: January 7,
The small triangular plot containing the
hairdressers and the yard beside it can be seen on this 1870 map,
immediately to the west of the buildings shown in black in the centre of
the map, Trinity House and South Leith Church.
Here is a link to the
1894 map on the National Library of Scotland website. The old
hairdresser and the yard beside it are about a third of the way down this
map, a short distance:
- SE of 'School, Boys and Girls'
- West of 'Trinity House'.
Thank you to John Dickson who wrote:
"In James Scott Marshall's book, 'The Life and
Times of Leith', there is a drawing of Nicol's Court which is to the right
side of the barber's at Green Jenny's Close.
Nicol's Court was
unofficially so-called in honour of Mrs Nicol,
an auld wife who lived there and kept a mangle. She took in mangling
for a farthing a pin."
"Nicol's Court and the
court and barber's shop was demolished to make way for an extension to
Yardheads school." ***
John Dickson, Silverknowes, Edinburgh:
January 7, 2010
Extension of Yardheads School?
John mentions the demolition of Nicol's Court and
the barber's shop to make way for an extension of Yardheads School
(above). Was this extension ever built?
The hairdressers and the yard were not demolished
until 1914, according to the caption written on the photo at the top of
There is a sign carved in a stone plaque above
one of the entrances to Yardheads School. It reads:
There is no mention on the plaque of any further
school extension having been built in the 20th century, and the book
'The Buildings of Scotland - Edinburgh (John Gifford et al) makes no
mention of any such extension having been built.
Maybe there were plans that were not implemented
due to the outbreak of World War I in 1914.
Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh: January 29,
Thank you to Frank Ferri who wrote:
"Yardheads School is now housing.
The school became 'St Mary's Star of the Sea
which I attended from 1940 to 1947.
The school moved to the former Leith Links school property a few years
Frank Ferri, Newhaven, Edinburgh:
January 26, 2011