Dumbiedykes Photograph

Holyrood Square

Photo 1


Photograph oh Holyrood Square, Dumbiedykes, Edinburgh, provided by Isa Paulin, Cheshire, formerly of Dumbiedykes

  Reproduced with acknowledgement to Isa Paulin, Cheshire, England.




Isa Paulin

Cheshire, England

Holyrood Square


Thank you to Isa Paulin for sending me the photograph of Holyrood Square above, and a photograph of another side of the square.

  Photograph oh Holyrood Square, Dumbiedykes, Edinburgh, provided by Isa Paulin, Cheshire, formerly of Dumbiedykes

Isa wrote:

Holyrood Square

"I just wondered if you would be interested in these couple of pictures of Holyrood Square where I was born in 1936 and lived there until 1957 when the Square was demolished during the 'Dumbiedykes Development Plan'.

Our house was the one with the wash house pram and old rug outside (in the large photograph above)

We were probably one of the last families to leave. We moved to the Canongate but I was only there about 18 months when I left the area to get married.

I am sure there will be some people who will recognise these photos, although I must admit I haven't come across any 'Squaries' on any of the websites - but you never know???"

 Isa Paulin, Cheshire, England:  5 November 2005


Isa tells me that she is reminded of the way of life in Holyrood Square by a poem, 'Nostalgia for a Tenement',  written by John Cairney.  The poem has many verses.  Here is an extract:

Nostalgia for a Tenement

Verse 2

"What's to remember?

Please yoursel'.

The family Bible on the shelf,

The jaw-box where I washed my feet

Efter tanner-ba' fitba' in the street.

Lampposts for goal posts

Twenty in each team.

A kerbside enclosure for letting off steam!

Up the stairs like a mountain goat

"O-P-E-N" from a husky throat,

Old zinc bath ablow the bed,

The kitchen range - shining black-lead,

The kettle never off the boil,

Nightly dose of castor oil!

The squeal of pulleys thro' the wa'

The woman's face that says it a'.

Grime and grease and sentiment -

Nostalgia for tenement...'"

  John Cairney

This extract above is reproduced with acknowledgement to John Cairney who tells me that:

-  the original was written and recorded in Canada during his tour there in 1978, and that he revised it in 1980 and again in 1981.

-  he intends to publish the whole poem in his next book, 'Glasgow Flourishes' now being prepared for the Scottish publishers, Luath Press Ltd.

Reunion in Canada

Isa is the middle of the five ladies in the photograph above, all from Dumbiedykes, Edinburgh.  The photograph was taken at a reunion in Canada in September 2005.

Edinburgh History  -   Recollections  -  Dumbiedykes reunion in Canada




Andrew Weddell

Magdalene, Edinburgh

Thank you to Andrew Weddell who wrote:

Photos of Holyrood Square

"l have two photos that marry in with this one of Holyrood Square that came from Isa Paulin:

Photograph oh Holyrood Square, Dumbiedykes, Edinburgh, provided by Isa Paulin, Cheshire, formerly of Dumbiedykes

one (from the Edinburgh Room, Edinburgh Central Library) is of Holyrood Square Lane and the start of the staircase which  ran up the side of the building from the lane.

-  the other (from the Edinburgh Evening News) shows a local Councillor, l think was Pat Rogan, telling the tenants (in 1957?) about the demolish of the square. 

This is like a bird's eye view.  It takes in the whole of the square and also the staircase.

Putting the three photos together, it shows you the whole left-hand side  and the top right-hand side of  the square.

My grandfather's family ** lived at 29 Holyrood Square - at the end of the building, next to the wall -  about two doors up from Isa Paulin."

Andrew Weddell, Magdalene, Edinburgh:  February 13, 2010

** Andrew Waddell's grandfather was known as 'Daddy Weddell'.




Ian Carroll

Thank you to Ian Carroll who tells me that he came across the EdinPhoto web site by chance and that  the memories of Holyrood Square and Milton House Primary came flooding back from some fifty seven years ago.

Ian also sent me photos of his class at Milton House Primary School, taken in 1953 and 1957.  Ian attended Milton House Primary School from 1953 until 1960

Ian wrote:

Holyrood Square

"I was born at 13 Holyrood Square in July 1948. My parents were William and Sarah Carroll.

I well recall the photograph submitted by Isa Paulin  of Holyrood Square and of the brick columns which housed the lavatories shared by two families.

Photograph oh Holyrood Square, Dumbiedykes, Edinburgh, provided by Isa Paulin, Cheshire, formerly of Dumbiedykes

 There was no lighting in these lavatories and in the winter they were freezing cold.

I don't recall Isa but there's a good chance she may remember me as a chubby eight year old.

We were re-housed to the Canongate in 1956/57.

Ian Carroll:  September 6, 2010



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