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Recollections

Broughton

Streets, Houses and Shops

Please scroll down this page, or click on one of the links below.

1.

Sybil

Lynn Massachusetts, USA

+ replies from

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

East Claremont Street

2.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Broughton Point

3.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

East London Street to Macdonald Road

4.

Alastair Liddle

Bonchester Bridge, Borders, Scotland

Macdonald Road

5

Betty Fraser (née Simpson)

Sydney, New South Wales, Australiad

New Broughton

6.

Carol Dicker

Australia

Broughton Road

  -  Chemical Works

6.
Reply 1

Peter Stubbs

Edinburgh

6.
Reply 2

GM Rigg

Edinburgh

6.
Reply 3

Carol Dicker

Australia

6.
Reply 4

Patrick Hutton
New Town, Edinburgh

6.
Reply 5

James Martin

7.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Claremont Crescent

-  Sandy Hill

-  Elas Studios

-  Inner Ring Road Proposals

7.
Reply 1

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland +

7.
Reply 2

Lilian Buczac

Dunstable, Bedfordshire, England

8.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Logie Green Road and
Beaverbank Place

9.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Beaverbank Place

10.

Donnie Graham

Zwickau, Germany

Beaverbank Place

11.

Peter Stubbs

Edinburgh

Bellevue Road

12.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

+ reply from

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Broughton Primary School

Broughton Point

East Claremont Street bombing

Stag's Head Pub

50 Broughton Road

13.

Brian Speedie

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

+ reply from

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Broughton School Baths

14.

Jim Patience

Alberta, Canada

Broughton Point  Coop

15.

Donnie Graham

Zwickau, Germany.

The Ditch or The Dump

Corner Shops

Murders

Gas Light

Newsagent

Bakers

16.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Rent Book

17.

Simon Clegg

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Changing Scene

18.

Odette Thomas
(
née Downes)

California, USA

Albany Street:  Gas Lights

19.

Edmund Raphael
Minehead, Somerset, England

Edmund Elas' photographic studio

20.

Edmund Raphael
Minehead, Somerset, England

Edmund Elas

21.

Les Braby

Chemical Works

Blacksmith

22.

Win Johnston
maiden name
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Duncan's Girls

Powderhall Dog Track

Old Playmates

Emigration

 

Recollections

1.

Sybil

Lynn Massachusetts, USA

Thank you to Sybil, now living in Lynn Massachusetts, USA, who wrote:

East Claremont Street

"I lived in East Claremont Street in the little block of semi detached houses at the school end.

Broughton
 Primary School

      Broughton Primary School, Broughton Road ©

How I wish I had taken photos of all these places years ago, but when you live there you never think of it as its just there and you think it will stay that way forever."

Sybil:  January 22, 2006

 

Recollections

1.

Reply 1.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Thank you to Alex Dow for giving some historical details about East Claremont Street.   Alex wrote:

"Sybil might be interested to know that area where she lived was once the in-bye grazing of my Great-Grandfather Dow's town dairy (Broughton Point), as also the area behind the East Claremont Street Drill Hall.

My late father, 1900-1977, could remember helping to take the cows back and forwards along East Claremont Street.  That must have been up to 1914 when my G-Grandfather Dow died.

See 'Broughton Point' below.

The MILLER company built those houses around the mid-1930s, along with the similar houses in Bellevue Road; and many other locations in Edinburgh. (see the centenary booklet for Edinburgh Corporation Transport - 1980s).

'Old Miller' lived in Bellevue Road from when he built the tenements in about 1905, until moving out to the Ravelston Dykes estate (now being re-developed). His son was (Sir) James Miller, only person to have been Lord Provost of Edinburgh and Lord Mayor of London"

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland:   October 24, 2005

 

Recollections

2.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Broughton Point

At the junction of Broughton Road and East Claremont Street

Thank you to Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland for sending the sketch below of the farm buildings at Broughton Point.  The sketch was drawn, about 1970, by Alex's father, ALS Dow (1900-1977).  It represents what he remembered from about 1910.

Alex says that the sketch compares well with a large-scale period map of the area. There is a reference to a gate and 7 trees on the right-hand side of the sketch.  The early map also shows the gate and 7 trees nearby, 6 in line and 1 offset.

Broughton Point  -  c.1910

Sketch of Broughton Point, c.1970

© Reproduced with acknowledgement to Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland

Sketch (rotated)

Sketch of Broughton Point, c.1970 - Rotated so that North is at the top. ©

This sketch has to be rotated clockwise through 120 degrees to line it up with the map below.

1925 Map

Broughton

Broughton Point is at the junction of Broughton Road and East Claremont Street.  It is at the top of this map (centre-left).

Edinburgh map  -  1925  -  Section C

© Peter Stubbs  Please contact peter.stubbs@edinphoto.org.uk for permission to reproduce

Alex writes:

Paintings

"You'll see the reference to Nellie Heriot at the top of the sketch.  She was grand-daughter of my great-grandfather, the dairy farmer, ALS Dow the First.

I may have seen the two paintings hanging in her Bellevue Street flat in the 1940s, but I am only aware of the one which I saw about 1989 in the flat of another  relative, Nellie's sister May. That flat was one of the 1980s group built on the old Logie Green Road Goods Depot, overlooking the Water of Leith."

Other Buildings

"Broughton Point is the intersection at the east end of East Claremont Street with Broughton Road, just as Broughton Road passes what was the Janitor's house of Broughton Primary School.

The actual Point is probably still occupied by what was the 1930's branch of St Cuthbert's (The Store).

Then further up ECS are the 1930s houses including Sybil's home. Miller's (and Stuart Holdings?) were doing a lot of "fill-in" building in that period.

The 1980s Edinburgh City Transport Centenary booklet had a reproduction of an Edinburgh Tramways 1935 map. It includes a Miller's advert, giving a list of the various sites that houses were available to rent or buy.

There was a separate house at the Point, referred to by my father as "Captain Tait's".  If I remember correctly, in 1881 it was occupied by the minister of the large church on the corner of Mansfield Place and East London Street."

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland, March 31, 2006

 

Recollections

3.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland, wrote:

East London Street to Macdonald Road

Gas Pipe

"Maybe others remember the squad of German PoWs who laid a gas pipe along East London Street, across Annandale Street along Hope(toun) Crescent and into Macdonald Road.

It might still be possible to trace it as it was the long linear hump running about three feet out from the pavement on the garden side of Hope Crescent.  In East London Street, it was more generally the line of disturbed cobbles."

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland:   February 7, 2006

Recollections

4.

Alastair Liddle

Bonchester Bridge, Borders, Scotland

Alistair Liddle, now living at Bonchester Bridge in the Scottish borders, wrote:

Macdonald Road

Buses

"I was born in Leith and then moved up into Edinburgh in 1956. My parents had bought a flat in McDonald Road and one of my earliest memories from there is of vast amounts (to a small boy) of Edinburgh Corporation double deckers being brought round from Annandale Street garage every night after being cleaned and washed, to be parked on a piece of open ground on which now stands the McDonald Road Fire Station."

Alistair Liddle, Bonchester Bridge, Borders, Scotland: November 17, 2006

 

Recollections

5.

Betty Fraser (née Simpson)

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Betty Fraser (née Simpson), Sydney, Australia, wrote:

1930s

"I was born at No.7 New Broughton in 1931.  Like Hugh Hainey, we moved from New Broughton slums to Royston.  New Broughton must have been NEW  around 1780's!   

We moved to 28 Royston Mains Rd around 1935 after my wee sister was born."

New Broughton

"There was a kindergarten in New Broughton and I recall the battered old pedal car and odd toys and the nicest woman who was in charge.  I remember she even called around to our new house in Granton to see how we were faring.

The street in New Broughton was a little steep and cobbled.  There was a family story of my mother berating a coal carrier who was beating his horse to get up as it had slipped on the icy road and she told him to get some bags around its hooves!"

Betty Fraser (née Simpson), Sydney, New South Wales, Australia,  April 9, 2006

 

Recollections

6.

Carol Dicker

Australia

Carol Dicker, Australia, wrote:

Broughton Road

Poison Factory

"My 94 year old mother spent some time in Edinburgh.  She moved from Kent to Broughton Road, Edinburgh in1916. Her father, Charles Spittey, worked for the dockyardsand she attended Broughton Primary School.

Recently she has been talking a lot about Broughton Road.  She lived in a flat near the top, opposite what she describes as a high wall behind which was a Poison Factory.  This was one of her earliest memories.  She thinks it was a target for German bombers during WW1.

I would love to be able to give her some info about the Poison Factory, but can find no mention of it anywhere. 

I have read all the reminiscences but can find no reference to it.

I have Google walked down Broughton Rd, and think I’ve identified the approximate area where she lived - Nos 12 to 20, which are opposite a high wall.

Carol Dicker, Australia:  September 10, 2009 (with updates provided September 13, 2009)

Question

Does anybody know anything about a poison factory in Broughton Road, around 1925?  If so, please email me, then I'll pass on your message to Carol.

Thank you.    Peter Stubbs:  September 10, 2009

 

Recollections

6.

Answer 1.

Peter Stubbs

Edinburgh

Broughton Road

Lothian Chemical Company

Lothian Chemical Company Ltd was based at the location you mention, on the north side of Broughton Road at the western end of the road from 1916* until at least 1970.   The company's address was 3 Broughton Road.

 [Source:  Edinburgh & Leith Post Office Directories]

I'm not sure what the company manufactured but I expect it would include poisons!

This is now the site of a Tesco supermarket., previously a William Low supermarket.  The Lothian Chemical Co moved to West Shore Road, Granton, but I believe that their factory in West Shore Road may have closed a few years ago.

Peter Stubbs:  September 10, 2009

* UPDATED:  September 14, 2009

Recollections

6.

 Answer 2.

GM Rigg

Edinburgh

Broughton Road

Lothian Chemical Company

"The chemical plant on Broughton Road that was replaced in the 1970s by William Low's supermarket.

I know that they made acids as lots of people bought the old disused acid carbouys from the site as mini indoor gardens when they were all the rage in the late 1960s. They came in lots of sizes & were all made from that greenish glass & were very thick."

GM Rigg, Edinburgh:  Message posted in EdinPhoto guest book: September 10, 2009

 

Recollections

6.

Answer 3.

Carol Dicker

Australia

Broughton Road

Lothian Chemical Company

Thank you to Carol Dicker, Australia, who replied:

"Thank you for the info re the Lothian Chemical Co.

It confirms my idea that my mother lived in the block of flats numbered 12-20 Broughton Rd as it is opposite the now Tescos store."

Carol Dicker, Australia:  September 11, 2009

 

Recollections

6.

Answer 4.

Patrick Hutton

New Town, Edinburgh

Broughton Road

Lothian Chemical Company  -  Photo

Thank you to Patrick Hutton for reminding me that I already had a photograph of Lothian Chemical Company's works on the EdinPhoto web site.

Please click on the thumbnail image below to enlarge it

Broughton Road Chemical Works ©

Acknowledgement:  Patrick Hutton, New Town, Edinburgh:  September 11, 2009

 

Recollections

6.

Answer 5.

James Martin

Broughton Road

Lothian Chemical Company  -  Photo

Thank you to James Martin who wrote:

"I worked at this factory as an Engineer, from 1977 to 1989.

We recovered solvents and produced Formaldehyde.

We left Broughton and relocated to West Shore Rd Granton."

Sheriff Chemicals
West Shore Road
2002  -  [closed]
Edinburgh Waterfront  -  Cycling, West Harbour Road  -  6 October 2002 ©

Acknowledgement:  James Martin:  April 26, 2014

Recollections

7.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Danny Callaghan, now living in Falkirk, sent me a photograph taken by Elas of Edinburgh.  The company was based at 10 Claremont Crescent, Edinburgh.

The old trade directories and telephone directories show that Edmond Elas was based here from around 1952 to 1998.   However,10 Claremont Crescent now appears to have become Elas Guest House.  (See also 'Reply 2' below)

The photo that Danny sent is of a class at his primary school, St Mary's , York Lane, Edinburgh.

I don't know who now owns the copyright on Elas photos, so am not able to reproduce Danny's photos.  However, I Danny told me a little about what he remembers of the company.

Danny wrote:

Claremont Crescent

Sandy Hill

"I remember the Elas house well as it was in Claremont Crescent and backed onto the Sandy Hill.  Our flat and back green also  backed onto the Sandy Hill.   I never quite knew why it got that name as I don't remember it being sandy, but it was a great adventure playground."

Elas Studio

"From our house, we could see right in the Elas main rooms.   The house had a long garden with apple trees which were, of course, a target for us.  Then someone would threaten us out the window with a gun and we all ran for our lives."

Danny Callaghan, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland:  October 27, 2009

 

Recollections

7.

Reply 1.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Alex Dow added:

Claremont Crescent  -  Sandy Hill

"The East Claremont Street ridge is a pre-historic sand bank.

Although I do not recollect any, apparently there were several sand pits in the general area in the 19th century."

Inner Ring Road Proposals

"One of the worries about the 1960's Inner Ring Road was that it was proposed to tunnel through this under Claremont Crescent, from (lower) Bellevue Road to about Beaverhall Road, endangering Claremont Crescent and requiring the demolition of many houses in Bellevue Gardens, (lower) Bellevue Road, Annandale Street Grove; and also many industrial units between that Grove and the northerly corner of Gayfield Square."

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland:   April 25, 2010

 

Recollections

7.

Reply 2.

Lilian Buczac

Dunstable, Bedfordshire, England

Thank you to Lilian Buczac, a member of the Elas family, for telling me:

Claremont Crescent  -  Guesthouse

"Following the death of the photographer Edmund Elas, it was his daughter who changed the use of 10 Claremont Crescent to a bed & breakfast business and named it Elas Guesthouse."

Lilian Buczac, Dunstable, Bedfordshire, England:  April 26 + May 3, 2011

 Recollections

8.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Danny Callaghan, now living in Falkirk, wrote:

Logie Green Accident

"The Car park of Vogue furniture store in Logie Green Road used to be a vacant piece of ground that backed onto the backgreen of no 6 Beaverbank Place.   This was a site for local bonfires.   There was a high wall between the backgreen and the bonfire site.

On Victoria Day 1948 the Monday 17 May, there was the usual Victoria Day bonfire, when there was a tragic accident. 

My cousin, Kathleen Elms of 6 Beaverbank Place, aged 12 was on or about the wall when it collapsed.   She subsequently died from her injuries on 2 June 1948.

My cousin had wanted to take me to the bonfire but my mother said I was too young, at 3 year old.  Maybe, had she taken me, she may still be here with us. 

This was double family tragedy as my aunt was pregnant at the time and running to the accident went into labour and miscarried her baby.

If anyone has any further information about the accident I would be interested to hear."

Danny Callaghan, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland:  November 6, 2009
+ updated November 10, 2009 (Date of Victoria Day 1948 amended).

Reply to Danny?

If you would like to send a reply to Danny about this accident, please email me, then I'll pass on your message to him.    Thank you.

-  Peter Stubbs:  November 8, 2009

 

 Recollections

9.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Thank you to Danny Callaghan for writing again with more memories of Beaverbank Place.

Danny wrote

Beaverbank Place

"A large contingent of the Callaghan family lived in Beaverbank Place.  The street is unusual in its numbering - numbers started top left went down to bottom and back up the other side.

- My dad's sister, Annie Elms (née Callaghan), stayed at no 6 Beaverbank Place, in picture. 

My dad's brother, Mike Callaghan, and family stayed in the stair opposite No 34.  Then he moved to 50 Broughton Road in the late-1960s.

-  Another of my dad's sisters, Teresa Woods (née Callaghan), lived at No 35 Beaverbank Place.  This was a 'main door flat'. (i.e. ground floor flat with its own door, rather than a shared entrance.)  It was at the top-right, just down from Terry the corner shop.   This was quite a large house and she used to have lodgers.

-  My mum and dad, Lily and Danny Callaghan, stayed at No 35 Beaverbank Place.  (That's  the address on my birth certificate.)  Then they got their flat at 50 Broughton Road, about 1946

Later, in the late-1980s, they moved to the new houses at Boat Green, next Tesco's Supermarket which was built on the site of timber merchants, Souness & Spiers, where I have worked."

Danny Callaghan, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland:  November 6, 2009

 

 Recollections

10.

Donnie Graham

Zwickau, Germany

Thank you to Donnie Graham, Zwickau, Germany who read Recollections 8 above, then wrote:

Logie Green Accident

"I was taken back in time when I read the story from Danny Callaghan, of how his cousin died after a wall collapsed on her.

I spent my childhood years in Beaverbank place (1957 till 1970).  I lived at No5, in a top floor flat which overlooked the backgreen, and wasteland that we called 'The Ditch'. I often played there with my pals.

As I remember, we all know that there had been an accident and that a wee lassie had died after a wall had collapsed on her.  Till now, I never knew the accident took place where there once was a high wall, separating the wasteland and the backgreen.

I find it interesting that the accident actually happened years before I was born, and obviously was never forgotten about

Donnie Graham, Zwickau, Germany:  November 10, 2009

 

 Recollections

11.

Peter Stubbs

Edinburgh

Thank you to a resident at 77 Bellevue Road, who wrote:

Bellevue Road  -  Ghost?

"I live at 77 Bellevue Road.  We are sure we have heard a ghost there.  I wondered if you knew of anything that may have happened in that building.

November 11, 2009

Reply?

I don't know anything about the history of the building, myself.  However if you have any information or comments that you'd like me to pass on to the person who asked this question, please email me.

Thank you.

Peter Stubbs:  November 11, 2009

 Recollections

12.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Thank you to Danny Callaghan who wrote

Broughton Primary School

"As a pupil of St Mary's (York Lane) School, we used to have to walk down to Broughton School to learn to swim at the School Baths.   This was from about 1954 till 1957.

Unlike today, we all used to troop down the road with no teachers and it was a great skive.  I think we got about 90 mins every few weeks, girls and boys alternate weeks.

I remember there used to be a large foot bath with disinfectant, sunk into the pool side at the entry to the changing rooms, shaped like an old tine bath.  

We were taught by a lady who used a ruler to whack across our backsides if we misbehaved and she could make it sting.   We were put in a harness attached to the roof and had to swim up the pool.  I was only taught the breast stroke and I have never progressed from that.   At this pool, I proudly won first swimming certificate."

Broughton Point

"Here were 'The Store' (St Cuthbert's Co-op) shops.     A work colleague, Bob Johnston, lived in one to the Miller houses a few doors from The Store."

East Claremont Street  -  Bombing

"There were three bomb sites in East Claremont Street. ***

1.  My father told me that, on one of the few bombing runs they made on Edinburgh, the Germans were thought to be aiming for Brown Brothers, the ships' engineering company in Broughton Road and were using the steeple of St Mary's Church in Bellevue Crescent as their line up.

2.  The second site was next to the printing works opposite the  Miller houses, which were rebuilt as private flats.  The story goes that the builder went bust and the council took over for council housing.

3.  The third site was opposite the TA drill hall and the other at Melgund Terr which I think had the TA's garage on it for a while."

 **Please also see Reply below.    Peter Stubbs, April 25, 2010

Stag's Head Pub

"Recollection 6 shows picture of corner of Rodney Street and Lothian Chemical Works.    The pub on the corner is still there, the Stag's Head.

The lounge/snug bar was entered from Broughton Road and for decades was presided over by the barmaid, one of our neighbours, Mina Harrison.  She became Mina McMan when she remarried

The ground next to the Lothian Chemical Works is the Navy Club (Royal Navy & Royal Marine Association & Club).  Again,it is still there and active.   (More on that another time.)"

50 Broughton Road

"I was amazed yesterday, when I visited Broughton, to find that the stair where I was brought up until I was 19 has now been turned into Holiday Apartments

This stair was very unusual in this area as none of the 16 flats were ever sold, due to the stair being owned by the Heriot Trust, all offers to buy by the tenants over the years were always rebuffed.

The stair was eventually put up for auction in its entirety in the mid 1980s and my father says it went for a song.    It was purchased by a developer Hugh MacKenzie who improved all the flats and intended letting out to DSS tenants. 

He was very good in dealing with the older long term residents ensuring they were least disturbed during renovations, some having been there over 50 years.  He offered some of them the option to move to newer flats that he owned at Boat Green, just up the road.

This was a blessing for my mother as she had heart problems and could not manage the climb to the 2nd floor.  It's unusual to say this of a property developer, but I am pleased to say Hugh did look after the older, long tenants and he himself supervised my mum and dad's move.  Thanks Hugh.

I have been in touch with company who have these apartments now and am hoping to be able to get a visit down memory lane."

Danny Callaghan, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland:  November 10, 2009

 Recollections

12.

Reply 1.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Alex Dow wrote:

No Bombs

East Claremont Street

"There are no bomb sites in East Claremont Street.  Brown Brothers may have been on the German target list, but the three locations referred to above were certainly NOT bomb sites.

1.  MacDougall's Educational Establishment Printing Works

These works caught fire on a Saturday afternoon.  The reported cause was probably wiring in a lift shaft.

I remember standing in (lower) Bellevue Road watching it burn.  There was a fair-sized crowd.  This would not have been the case if it had been bombing.

For a few years afterwards, we scrounged rulers and jotters from the sheds at the west end of the site, towards Bellevue Gardens.

2.  The TA Garage

This garage was built on allotments on the west side of West Annandale Street and its intersection with East Claremont Street, almost opposite the TA Drill Hall.

3.  Melgund Terrace

This site was also allotments,  This is NOT the TA Garage site."

No Evidence of Bombs
in East Claremont Street

"The allotments in both 2. and 3. above can be seen on the 1930s Aerial Photos of Edinburgh.  (These photos appear to be reconnaissance photos for the later mid-1930s Miller estates.)

If you check the Edinburgh map for 1908 and 1909, the open spaces which became allotments are clearly visible, close to the start of World War 1, so nothing at either site to be bombed, even accidentally.

There were never any substantial buildings of any size on these two areas, apart from what may have existed as part of the original Edinburgh Zoo, by then long defunct.

As I walked up West Annandale Street and along East Claremont Street to Broughton Primary, starting 1940, I would have been very conscious of any bomb damage in WW2.

I was born in the front bedroom of 51 Bellevue Road 1935, living there until I joined the RAF in 1957. I was not evacuated at any time; and have clear memories of the area from 1939 onwards."

Bombs in Edinburgh

"Regarding bombing raids in WW2 in and around Edinburgh, many of these were from German bombers ditching bombs which they had been unable to drop on Clydeside. This lightened their loads, helping to extend the aircraft's range to a hopefully safe landing in Belgium, Holland etc.

Very few raids were targetted on Edinburgh, as it was considered of lesser strategic value. It did not have the extensive industries found in Glasgow and Clydeside, where any interruption assisted in the reduction of the merchant fleet, essential for bring food, raw materials etc from overseas."

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland:   April 25, 2010

 

 Recollections

13.

Brian Speedie

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Thank you to Brian Speedie for responding to Danny Callaghan's comments about learning to swim at Broughton School Baths (12 above),

Brian wrote:

Broughton School Baths

"I lived at 138 McDonald Road and was a pupil at Broughton school.  The teacher Danny describes was Mrs. Docherty.

I attained my Swimming, Life Saving Certificate under her instructions and was also a member of her school Swim Race Team."

Brian Speedie, Toronto, Ontario, Canada:  April 8, 2010

 Recollections

13.

Reply 1.

Alex Dow

Fife, Scotland

Alex Dow wrote:

Swimming Teacher

"The swimming teacher that Brian mentions above was MISS Docherty.  She was, somehow, related to my family.  I recollect our family visiting Miss Docherty at her basement flat in Saxe-Coburg Place, near Glenogle Baths, on a few occasions."

Broughton Primary School

"Others that I remember from Broughton Primary School are:

Miss Davidson, my last teacher at the Primary.

Mr Kippen, the Headmaster

Miss Merryweather and Miss Glendinning, teachers

-  'Old Muir' and his wife, Mrs Muir, the janitors.

Mr Davis (?), the engineer or boilerman.  He was related to the Kellys who had the Newsagents shop diagonally on the corner of Bellevue Road and Annandale Street."

Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland:   April 25, 2010

Brian Speedie (Recollections12) replied:

"Alex Dow is correct.
 It was Miss Docherty, not Mrs as I had stated."

Brian Speedie, Toronto, Ontario, Canada:  April 26, 2010

 

Recollections

14

Jim Patience

Alberta, Canada

Jim Patience wrote:

Co-op

"I worked in the store from when I left school in 1952, until I was conscripted in 1956.  I was an apprentice grocer.

I knew a few of the customers' co-op numbers by heart.  The only one I remember now is old  Missus Mc Lean, 72575.

My Dad worked at Robert Lambs in Logie Green Road as a box maker, until he retired in 1975."

Jim Patience, Alberta, Canada:  December 21, 2008

 

Recollections

15

Donnie Graham

Zwickau, Germany.

After seeing this recent photograph of the wasteland behind Beaverbank Place, Donnie Graham wrote:

The Ditch or The Dump

"Looking at your photos of the land being redeveloped behind Beaverbank Place takes me back to my childhood years when I lived in Beaverbank Place

In the 1960s, we played on that wasteland which was dubbed, 'The Ditch'. it was also known as 'The Dump' because ash from the old coal fires was used as landfill, as you can see in the photo.

    The backs of the homes at the south end of Beaverbankl Place  -  View from Logie Green RoadJune 2010 ©

The land there always seemed unstable.  It had a marsh-type quality.  As I remember, there was always a pungent smell in the air, which came from an open sewer somewhere hidden in the long grass.  The land was also full of debris from the bonfires.  Whilst playing there, somehow an old bed spring would always manage to attach itself to your socks!"

Corner Shops

"At the top end of Beaverbank Place, there used to be two corner shops:

 Archie´s, the off-license.  My father use to me send down there to buy his cigarettes,  I always hoped, and prayed that I would be served by Archie's wife, as poor Archie had terrible stutter, which was sadly imitated by all the kids around.

Terry's, on the opposite cornerAs a toddler and hooked into my pram, I'd often be left outside the shop when my mother had an errand to do

In between serving customers the women must have occasionally peeked out to see if I was still there! My father was always amazed how I could remember that I don't think you could leave a pram that nowadays.  It would be whisked off, and never seen again!"

Murders

"Going on to a more morbid theme, I remember my father telling me about the murders that took place in our stair in Beaverbank.  I would have only been about 2 or 3 years old at the time.

Apparently, a guy living on the first floor came back early from work to find that his wife was having an affair.  After a confrontation, he killed the both of them.  After dismembering the bodies, he put the parts into sacks, carried them upstairs and hid them in the loft.

The story goes that they were later found by a horrified chimney sweep whilst he was gaining access to the roof.  It's scary to think what might have been lying above my bedroom ceiling as I slept!

Isn't it amazing what your oblivious to as a child."

Gas Lights

"I vaguely recall my father telling of when there were gaslights in the stairs.  He would sometimes catch tramps and other poor souls putting the light out and using the gas to 'aerate' their bottles of meths."

Newsagent

"Melanie's, a newsagent was on the corner of Logie Green Road.  There, there they measured out sweets from large glass jars.  You you could also buy cinnamon sticks, which we smoked, pretending they were cigarettes, and looking over our shoulders in case some adult might tell your father.

Bakers

"On the same corner, there used to be a bakers.  They they did great scotch pies and bridies.  Nowadays, it's  called, Café Latte. A couple years ago I went in, and whilst sipping my coffee, proceeded to tell the owner what it once was etc, he just replied: 'Hmm...I'm from Livingston myself.'

See, that's what you get for being nostalgic!"

Donnie Graham, Zwickau, Germany:  June 14, 2010

 

Recollections

16

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Thank you to Danny Callaghan for telling me about some of the items that he has been finding in a large old box that belonged to his Dad.

Danny wrote:

Rent Book

"It's amazing what I'm finding in my Dad's old box.     One really interesting item is the original rent book for his flat in 50 Broughton Road, which I would say was among the better 'room and kitchen' flats.   

In February 1946, his rent was £5. 2/- 4d a quarter.  That's   about 45p a week.     As a percentage of wages that's far less that anyone would pay now."

Graham Callaghan, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland:  February 13, 2011

Recollections

17.

Danny Callaghan

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Robert Hepburn wrote about growing up in Broughton:

City Mission

We were encouraged, on a Wednesday afternoon, before playing soccer in Logie Green, to  go in for a Paris Bun at the City Mission."

Robert Hepburn, Cornwall, England:  February 9, 2007

Here is a reply from Danny Callaghan

Danny wrote:

City Mission

"We kids would go along to the mission sometimes.  Your religion did not matter, it was something else to do.   

I remember, probably in 1958, that some of the girls on our crowd went off on a summer camp with the mission to Abington; yes the one on the A74.  

So some of us lads decided we would cycle there on visiting day.    We were told it was just after Penicuik.    We thought, OK, that is not too far.   My bike was bust so I borrowed one and its gears were not working. 

So there we set off with some sannies and bottle of juice.    Yes  we know now Abington is a lot further than Penicuik.  In fact, it's about 42 miles from Edinburgh, and all seemed to be up hill going there. 

We made it, and the journey back seemed much shorter.     Admittedly, there was not the traffic of today, but could you imagine any parents today allowing there 12/13/14 year olds to head off on that journey.    Then I suppose we did not quite tell them the whole story, but in all honesty we did not know ourselves.

Anyway, it was "safe out and safe home" a round trip of 84 miles in bike without gears."

City Mission Today

"Judging by its well-cared-for state, the timber hall was still very much in use when I took this picture in November 2009.  The hall is now surrounded with houses:

City Mission, Logie Green Road  -  2009 ©

Danny Callaghan1February 16, 2011

Note

Danny tells me that he passed the City Mission this week and it is still very much in use.  It is in Logie Green Road, near the corner of Logie Green Gardens, almost opposite the new  Beaverbank Business Park.

Evidence of the 21st century can be seen in the 2009 photo above:

-  the car

-  the 'speed hump' road calming measure

-  the parking ticket machine on the pavement.

Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh:  February 19, 2011

 

Recollections

18.

Odette Thomas

(née Downes)

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Thank you to Odette Thomas (née Downes) who wrote:

Albany Street

Gas Lights

"I remember watching street gas lights being lit on Albany Street in late 1950s.  It seemed to always be foggy.

We would run around the streets as young as 5 or 6 years old, parents not knowing where we were.  When I think about this today it shocks me how different times are."

Odette Thomas (née Downes), California, USA:  February 16, 2012

Recollections

19.

Edmund Raphael

Minehead, Somerset, England

Edmund Elas' studio at 10 Claremont Crescent was mentioned by Danny Callaghan in Recollections 7 above.

Now Edmund Raphael has sent more memories of the studio.

Edmund wrote

Elas Studio

10 Claremont Street

"I've just had word from someone now resident in Edinburgh, who has moved into Claremont Crescent, which prompted me to look for memories of the Elas Studio at 10 Claremont Crescent.

I knew the Elas family very well indeed, in the early-1970s. Edmund Elas had come to Scotland after the war with his wife, who then had a dreadful accident, which left her sadly disabled.

Edmund Elas was the out-of-date type of photographers, who still attended Friday and Saturday night dances in the hope of attracting business. He was always very smartly dressed in an evening suit, with his daughter as his assistant.

I knew how Teressa hated these evenings, but her father was not one to be argued with.  Although I can't remember him owning a gun, he would be protective of his property, rather careful that he was not run out of Claremont Crescent, as he had been from north-east Poland.

Edmund did have a very abrupt manner, oftentimes jumping the gun, as he had not understood what was being told to him or asked of him.

Edmund Elas was a great host and a kind friend, as was his daughter and his wife.  He was partial to Polish spirit (strong Vodka) which he mixed with Ribena and cloves, serving it to everyone who called, including the Polish priest, who seemed to be sustained by the Elas family."

Edmund Raphael, Minehead, Somerset, England:  March 2,, 2012

 

Recollections

20.

Edmund Raphael

Minehead, Somerset, England

Edmund Raphael added:

Edmund Elas

"Edmund Elas was a regular photographer for Edinburgh University graduations, but it seemed that this was rather too big an event for him, when it came to actually printing the students' images.  His daughter and son worked hard to enable his success during his later years."

Edmund Raphael, Minehead, Somerset, England:  March 4, 2012

 

Recollections

21.

Les Braby

Kent, England

Several people have sent their memories of the chemical works in Broughton Road.  I have included these in Recollections 6 above.

Here, Les Braby sends more comments.

Les wrote:

Chemical Works

"The 'poison factory' at Broughton has been mentioned.  There was a chemical factory there for many years, on the site where the Tesco store is now

I lived in Heriothill Terrace until I joined the army in 1962.  The chemical factory was there then, and for a number of years after that.

Quite what they produced, I don’t know, but it was never sealed as though it was a secret establishment.  It backed onto the shovel works and was next to St Philip’s Church.

Blacksmith

As a boy, I remember a blacksmith had a place opposite the Stags' Head, next to Heriothill House which is now the Navy Club; we used to watch him shoeing the horses.

He wasn’t there for long when I knew him, mind you - although he’d probably been there for years before that."

Les Braby, Kent, England:  March 7, 2012

 

Recollections

22.

Win Johnston
maiden name

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Thank you to Winifred Johnston who wrote:

Duncan's Girls

"I lived at 91 Broughton Road from 1941 to 1956.  We could see Duncan's chocolate factory from our 2nd floor tenement window.  I remember the working girls when they knocked off, smelling like chocolate."

Powderhall Dog Track

"I also have memories of Powderhall Dog Track, especially when the Welshmen visited for a Race Day there.  They sang and walked on their way to and from the track, with daffodils in their lapels."

Old Playmates

"Sadly, I did not recognise the names of any of the contributors to the EdinPhoto web site.  I'd love to know what happened to some of my playmates:

-  Janet Potter

-  Billy and Kenneth Crosby

-  all the Burns children, John and Brian (twins), Alan, Loraine and Graham.

Perhaps one of them will read this and get in touch."

Emigration

"I emigrated to Australia with my family in 1956, when I was 15."

Win Johnston:  Melbourne, Victoria, Australia:  June 27, 2013

Reply to Win?

If you are one of the playmates that Win mentions above, or if you are someone else who remembers Win and would like to get in touch with her, please email me, then I'll pass on her email address to you.

Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh:  July 5+7, 2013

 

Broughton recollections

Edinburgh Recollections

Contributors to Recollections

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