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A selection of my photographs, many from Edinburgh throughout the year.   Also photos from Scotland, London, Iceland, Italy, Hong Kong and elsewhere    Many old maps of Edinburgh (Old Town, New Town, while City), Leith and Newhaven.  Includes several old transport maps and a comparison of old maps with recent aerial photos.   Old engravings, mailly of Edinburgh scenes.  Some from the 1820s, some from the 1890s,  some others - includes many hand-coloured examples from the 1820s.   News from Edinburgh today  -  Events, Collections, Buildings and Gardens, Transport   This site includes     1. Post card portraits taken in studios in Edinburgh:    2. Post card views either takeen/published by Ediburgh photographers or views of Edinburgh, or both.y Edinburgh    Views of Edinburgh, grouped into three sections:     1. Street views:    2. Buildings:    3. Around Edinburgh   Views of transport around Edinburgh  -  Horse drawn trams and buses, cable cars, electric trams, buses and a few railway photos.  Also several maps of Edinburgh's bus and tram routes.   Links to pages with Photos of Groups   Frequently Asked Questions

  Summary of the updates added to this site each month since the site was launched   Links to Dumbiedykes pages  Link to Granton pages  Link to Leith pages   Link to Newhaven pages   Links to Portobello pages   Link to My Recent Talks

 

Recollections

TL Devlin

Trawler Owners, Granton

1.

Darney Devlin
Edinburgh

Thomas L Devlin (2)  Newhaven Fishmarket

Thomas L Devlin (2)  Outside the Fishmarket

Granton  Devlin's Yard

The Trawling Fleet

Grace Devlin's Family Tea

Robert Darney Devlin  Railway Wagons

Robert Darney Devlin  Private Observation Car

2.

Grant King
Aberdeenshire

Devlin's Yard

3.

Jack Wilson
Sussex

Devlin's Yard

4.

Question

Walter Lyle Hume
Cowes, Isle of Wight

with reply from

John Stevenson
Trinity Edinburgh

Devlin's Yacht at Sandport Street, Leith

5.

Question

Jockey Sturgeon
Edinburgh

with reply from

John Stevenson
Trinity Edinburgh

and

Eddie Collie
North Bay, Ontario, Canada

Edwards' Bakery

6.

Eddie Collie
North Bay, Ontario, Canada

Devlin's Yard

7.

John Edwards
Sun City, Florida, USA

Devlin's Yard

Devlin Business

8.

John Edwards
Sun City, Florida, USA

Murder in Devlin's Yard

Devlin Business  -  History

9.

Alice Mitchell

Murder in Devlin's Yard

10.

John Fraser
The Inch, Edinburgh

Granton Harbour

 

Recollections

1.

Darney Devlin

Edinburgh

Darney Devlin (b.1921) is grandson of Thomas Leishman Devlin who built up the Devlin business between the early 1890s his death in 1919.

Darney is also the son of Robert Devlin.  Robert Robert managed the Devlin Head Office and repair yard at Granton, also Oban and Aberdeen.

Darney told me about several aspects of T L Devlin's business.  See below.

Thomas L Devlin (2)

Newhaven Fishmarket

"I have always known that Thomas Devlin had a first class reputation as a clever and strictly honest business man.

For years of dealing in the fish market at Newhaven, people wondered why he walked the whole length of the building, a few minutes before the bell to start the auctions, when he had water in his Market Office.

Newhaven Fishmarket  -  1 ©

A buyer told me that, one day on returning to his stance, he overheard him say to a salesman: "Don't sell any sole until I tell you." 

Word then got round that he had a photographic memory, and as all the owners piled fish boxes leaving the top box open, to display the type, he was able to survey and retain the overall size of landings by competitors."

Darney Devlin, Edinburgh, December 15, 2006

Thomas L Devlin (2)

Outside the Fishmarket

"Initially, probably from religious prejudice, he was refused a stance in the Market.  Nothing daunted, he stood up on two fish boxes in the street and asked if anyone would like him to sell their fish.  A number of foreign skippers were there and accepted.  That was the start.

   Newhaven Fishmarket with fishwives and carts ©

He was an ardent supporter of the Catholic Church and received an Honour from the King of Spain, but strangely, his wife Grace did not convert until after his death in 1919."

Darney Devlin, Edinburgh, December 15, 2006

Granton

Devlin's Yard

T L Devlin's yard was situated on the south side of Lower Granton Road, across the road from Granton Eastern Harbour. 

The yard included:

-  Engineering shop

-  Boiler works

-  Blacksmiths

-  Wheelwrights

-  Plumbers

-  Sail Makers

-  Stores

-  Offices

The company also made its own fish boxes, and made and repaired nets.  Ladies made the new nets, retired trawler men repaired the nets then dipped them in oil.

The Devlin Yard and Office at Granton was managed by Robert Devlin until he died, aged 37 in 1926.  Robert's son, Darney recalls:

"I was aged 4 when my father died.  For over three years after his death we lived with my mother's parents.  As a child, I was told very little of the business.

On returning to our own house, it did not take me long to discover the boat yard locally, which became a Mecca, as all the men who had known and respected my father welcomed me warmly.  They were always keen to show me how the various trades should be worked."

Darney Devlin, Edinburgh, December 15, 2006

John D Stevenson also knew the Devlin Yard at Granton well.  He believes that, at one time there were probably over 50 women working in Devlin's Net Works and another 70 in the yard at Granton.  New apartments have now been built on the site of the old Devlin Yard in Lower Granton Road.

 

The Trawling Fleet

"Thomas L Devlin began  to build up his fleet of steam trawlers in the 1890s.  He bought both second-hand and new trawlers, negotiating between boat-builders in Aberdeen and Edinburgh to achieve the best deal.  Trawlers then cost about £10,000 each.

By 1900, T L Devlin had 16 in service.  He continued to build up his fleet until the outbreak of World War 1."

Devlin's trawlers continued to sail out of Granton until 1962.  The trawler 'Madden' (GN101) was broken up by Malcolm Brechin at Granton in December 1962, after 45 years' service."

Darney Devlin, Edinburgh, December 15, 2006

Grace Devlin's Family Tea

Darney Devlin, grandson of:

-  Thomas Leishman Devlin  who founded the trawling business and

-  Grace Devlin  who owned the business following the death of TLD

remembers family meals at his grandmother's house.

Darney recalls:

"My grandmother had a genuine interest in and caring for all the grandchildren.  On a Sunday afternoon, we all gathered with my mother, the only adult, to have an enormous Scottish Tea.

Once we were all seated around the table, Grace would make a theatrical entrance into the room, dressed magnificently 'like a ship in full sail'.

The teas consisted of what was known as bakers' pies (mutton enclosed in light pastry sandwiches), bread, butter, pancakes, chocolate biscuits, fruit cakes and French cakes.  She was an excellent cook and kept the whole family in soup, tarts and puddings.

She had a three-flatted house located in a large garden with an orchard, fruit garden with every berry, and a vine in the conservatory.  There was no embargo on us picking anything in season.  There was also  a large park with goats that she milked herself, but could never understand why nobody else would drink the milk.

Christmas and Birthdays were always marked with a crisp banknote.

Darney Devlin, Edinburgh, December 15, 2006

Robert Darney Devlin

Robert Darney Devlin, managed the business of TL Devlin, trawler owners, Granton, until his death in 1926. 

Robert's son, Darney Devlin comments:

Railway Wagons

"T L Devlin & Sons were good customers of the railway companies and  had a fleet of railway trucks, marked 'Devlin' on the side.

Arrangements were made with the railways for these to be added to trains as required, to transport fish, and coal for the trawlers."

Model of a coal truck owned by Devlin Trawlers, Granton ©

Private Observation Car

Each year, my father would travel to Oban on holiday when the fishing fleet was in.  He would let it be known when he intended to travel, and the railway company would add an observation car for his private use, complete with a steward.

I was aged only four when his father died, but I still remember one of these journeys, playing with a toy tip-up truck on the carpet in the observation car, and looking up and seeing the steward, dressed in white and serving drinks from a silver salver."

Darney Devlin, Edinburgh, December 15, 2006

 

Recollections

2.

Grant King

Aberdeenshire.

Darney Devlin (b.1921) is grandson of Thomas Leishman Devlin who built up the Devlin business between the early 1890s his death in 1919.

Darney is also the son of Robert Devlin who ran the business from 1919 until his death in 1926.

Darney told me about several aspects of T L Devlin's business.  See below.

Devlin's Yard

"I used to pass Devlin's yard in Lower Granton Road, close to Granton Harbour just about every day on my way to school.  It always caught my eye as it was the only place left at that time that still had cobbles down.

When looking into the yard, the cobbles used to lead up to a grass mound which had a flag pole mounted which looked like a ship's sailing mast.

I remember, in my younger years,  in the early 1960s, standing outside the entrance to Devlin's yard  waiting on the car he had in those days pulling out,  just to see the fantastic bonnet mounting.

Never mind your Jaguar or Rolls Royce. This was a replica trawler. That man knew how to spend his money.  That was the way to spend it!"

I now wonder, when he wafted by in his car in this period, whether or not he had a rye smile on his face as just about all the house doors along Lower Granton Road to about the Wardie Hotel were painted Devlin green. (I wonder where the paint come from ??????)"

Grant King, Aberdeenshire, now working in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil::  December 13+14, 2006.

 

Recollections

3.

Recollections from

Jack Wilson

Thank you to Jack Wilson, formerly of 142 Granton Road, now living in Sussex.  Jack worked for TL Devlin, for the recollections below.

Jack wrote:

Devlin's Yard

"I worked for T L Devlin at Granton and Newhaven  in the fishmarket.  I am 68 now and I had a great life there.

TL Devlin's yard was next to Edwards' roll shop in Lower Granton Rd.  It had a big shop-like window with a model of one of Devlins trawlers.

The  yard reached  from Lower Granton Rd up to the road from Wardie steps to Granton Square (Granton Road).  The yard had a red Brick wall about six feet high all round it."

Jack Wilson, Somerset, England:  January 6+7, 2007

 

Recollections

4.

Yacht:  'The Darney'

Question

Walter Lyle Hume, Cowes, Isle of Wight recalls seeing a vessel named 'The Darney' in a yard on the Water of Leith at Sandport Street, Leith in the 1950s. 

Walter believes that the yacht left Leith for Oban in the west of Scotland in the mid-1950s.  He asks what else is known about this vessel.

Answer

Thank you to John D Stevenson, Edinburgh for finding the following connection with the Devlin family  in a 1957 edition of Lloyds Yacht Register.

Note: Several members of the Devlin family have been named Darney, the family name of Grace Devlin (née Darney) who married the founder of the Devlin Trawler owning business, Thomas Leishman Devlin.

'The Darney'

ON 163884

ex-MTB 'Messines'  (MTB = Motor Torpedo Boat)

Built 1940 by J. Thorneycroft  & Co Ltd., Southampton

64.39 GRT

73.6ft L, 16.9ft B, 7.4ft D

Two six cylinder General Motor's diesel engines

Owners : Thomas L. Devlin & Sons

Port of Reg : Granton

Member of Royal Scottish Motor Yacht Club

Extract from Lloyds Yacht Register (1957) by John D Stevenson, Trinity, Edinburgh, February 20, 2007

 

Recollections

5.

Edwards' Bakery

Question

Jockey Sturgeon, Granton, Edinburgh also wrote about Edwards' Bakery.

Jockey asked:

"I was wondering if you knew anything about Mr Edwards and his bakery on Lower Granton Road.

It is no longer a bakery as it was used only for a post office when he retired.  It is now only a house.

I am looking for photos and more information from when it was a bakery.  I visited the bakery when I was just a lad and I was born in 1970.

Jockey Sturgeon  January 7, 2007

If you remember anything about the bakery, or have any photos of it, please e-mail me and I will pass on the information to Jockey.

Thank you.  -  Peter Stubbs

Answer 1

Thank you to John Stevenson, Trinity, Edinburgh, who answered:

"Ernest Edward ran the "Baker and Grocer" business at the shop (which later became a Post Office) from around 1946.  From memory he lived in Portobello.

A relative (not sure of the relationship), James Edward,  operated a garage east of the Wardie Hotel ( - there is still one there now ) in the 1930's.

The business was best known for its "rolls". In the late '40's and '50's  people used  to go to there around midnight and buy rolls direct from the doorway of the bakery which was  behind the shop - I was one of their best customers at the weekends !!

They had a large "wholesale" trade in rolls , with at least two vans delivering around the town.

 If you think how well known "Mason's Pies" were a few years ago then "Edward's Rolls" were in the same category."

John D Stevenson, Trinity, Edinburgh:  January 9, 2007.

Answer 2

Thank you to Eddie Collie, Ontario, Canada who added:

"I just came across your article regarding Edwards Bakery in Granton and I may be able to add a few bits of information for you ."

The 'Works House'

"First. I was born in 1932 and actually lived in the 'works house' at TD Devlin's.  My father ,Charlie Collie, drove a  lorry Devlin's that delivered parts etc. to the trawlers.  That's is why we lived in the house."

Air Raids

"I have many memories of Edwards during the war as when there was an air raid all the people in the street were allowed to use Devlin's air raid shelter which was next to the bakery.

I should add that in these times as a kid we did not object to having air raids as it meant we could stay up late and did not have to go to school the next day until 10am.

The men would stand outside  together and the women would have a good gossip inside

The air raids lasted a reasonable time as it was usually the German planes going over to bomb Glasgow  so we had to wait till they made their return trip home."

Edwards' Bakery

"Where Edwards Bakery came in was that as kids we would get money from our mothers and run over to the actual (back shop) bakery and buy the rolls that were being made for the next day.  Did they taste good, wow!

I remember that my cousin from Canada was in Bomber Command and when the crew went on leave they would spend it with us. From what I heard at the dinner table my father had taken them in to Edwards one (could have been more) night and the family made the crew most welcome. I'm sure they had a few "nippy sweeties".  Unfortunately the crew were later killed over Germany.

Eddie Collie, North Bay, Ontario, Canada, September 9, 2007.

 

Recollections

6.

Eddie Collie

North Bay, Ontario, Canada

Thank you to Eddie Collie who added

The 'Works House'

"We lived in the works house at Devlin's yard at Granton.  It was on the third floor of Devlin's works.

The 1st floor was the Engine Shop and the second was the Net Shop where the women made and repaired the fishing nets.

I believe we lived rent free (a guess) as my dad also was watchman for the property when there was nobody working.

Devlin's Yard

I have many memories of the yard as it was my playground,  There were not many children at Easy Cottage (Lower Granton Road) and most of the time my brother and I played with Sandy Smith in the next building.

My uncle, Lauchlin Neil, was head joiner (carpenter).

Grant King (recollections 2, above) mentioned a big green at the entrance with a flag pole. That's where the air-raid shelter was during World War II.

While the war was a bad time, we kids had fun in the shelter.  The women all gossiped inside while the men preferred to stay outside. We kids also had time to go next door to Edwards the baker and get some freshly baked rolls which we ate without butter on them,

I probably know more about Devlin's yard etc. and would be happy to answer any question anyone has if I possibly can.  I also attended Granton school and later Bellevue

Eddie Collie, North Bay, Ontario, Canada, September 9, 2007.

If you have any questions for Eddie, please email me, then I'll pass them on to him.

Thank you.    -  Peter Stubbs:  July 13, 2008

 

7.

Question from

John Edwards

Sun City, Florida, USA

John Edwards, a member of the branch of the Devlin family that emigrated to the USA wrote:

Question

Murder in Devlin's Yard

"Do any of your readers have any information about the murder of a Night Watchman in the Devlin yard some years ago?

Apparently, the suspect was found guilty and sent to prison.  It appears that he was also found guilty of another murder."

John Devlin, Sun City, Florida, USA:  July 27, 2008

Answer  1

Thank you to Andy Hall, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England, for providing the answer to this question.  Andy wrote:

Murder in Devlin's Yard

"The night Watchman at Devlin's yard was a chap named Alan Fisher, aged 67.  He was murdered by a trawlerman named Donald Ferguson Forbes aged 23.

I believe the murder took place on  June  2/3,1958.   It is reported he struck the watchman with a bolt or similar instrument and robbed him of his cigarette case, lighter and £11.10s.

He was sentenced to death to be carried out on October 16,1958 at Saughton Prison Edinburgh. He was married in prison and his sentence reprieved on the October 10, 1958.

 [Acknowledgement:  The Times Archive]"

Andy Hall, Newcastle -upon-Tyne, England

 

8.

Question from

John Edwards

Sun City, Florida, USA

John Edwards, a member of the branch of the Devlin family that emigrated to the USA who asks:

Question

Devlin's Business  -  History

"What is known about the Devlin business after Grace took over ownership in 1919 and following her death in 1942.

I have a great interest in the period from the 1940s to 1960s, but have been able to discover very little about the Devlin business or the Devlin family during that period.

John Devlin, Sun City, Florida, USA:  July 27, 2008

 

9.

Answer from

Alice Mitchell

Edinburgh

Thank you to Alice Mitchell for giving more information about the man who carried out the murder in Devlin's yard in 1958.  (See 7 above.)

Alice wrote:

Answer 2

to question in 7 above

Murder in Devlin's Yard

"I note that Andy Hall replied to John Devlin's query, but he did not mention that Donald Ferguson Forbes went on to commit another murder for which he was found guilty.

Forbes, whose death sentence for the first murder was commuted to life imprisonment was freed in 1970.  Six weeks later, he stabbed a man in a pub brawl. 

After a year in jail he escaped from the maximum security wing at Peterhead Prison and was branded Scotland's most dangerous man.  He was recaptured and, until his release in 1998, was one of Britain's longest serving prisoners.

At the age of 68 he was back in the news again, this time dealing in drugs worth £340,000."

Alice Mitchell, Edinburgh: January 11, 2009

 

Recollections

10.

John Fraser

Inch, Edinburgh

After writing about working at Gibson Marine Workshops at Middle Pier, Granton Harbour,  John Fraser Added:

Granton Harbour

"My Father worked for Carnie and Gibb driving a fish lorry.

I used to go with my pal Ian Little on the Ben Idris.**

Ian's neighbour, George 'Dode' Scammel, was the cook.

My brother Davy also sailed from Granton, as did neighbours:

the Woods

Alec (Snr.) Janders, who was a skipper

Alec (Jun.) Janders

Louis, John and Brian, all deckhands.

They all worked for T L Devlin."

John Fraser, Inch, Edinburgh:  July 8, 2013

Ben Idris

** 'Ben Idris' was the Granton trawler, 'GN7', built in 1931. 

A photo of 'Ben Idris' and further information about her can be found on this Granton Trawlers web site.

Peter Stubbs:  July 18, 2013

 

 

T L Devlin (Trawler Owners)

Index

Family Car

Trawlers

Company

Recollections

 

More Pages

Granton
Pictures

Granton
Recollections
Edinburgh
Recollections

Recollections
Contributors

 

__________________

 

Links to Other Pages

EdinPhoto - Home Page  Please send me an e-mail ...  with your questions, comments, suggestions or news.   At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.     At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.  

Photographs and Other Images  -  These include portraits of photographers  -  photographic outings -  Princes Street views  -  Newhaven Fishwives  -  etc.  Early Photography in Edinburgh  -  Talbot, Brewster, Hill & Adamson, Early Professional Photographers in Princes Street, etc.  Professional Photographers in Edinburgh  -  1840 to 1940  -  Their names, dates of business and studio addresses.  The Photographic Society of Scotland  -  1856 to 1873  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, etc.  The History of Edinburgh Photographic Society  -  1861 to date  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, Poems, etc.  EPS Publications - EPS Handwritten Records  -  Photographic Journals  -  Trade Directories  -  Books  -  etc.  Thanks to all who have encouraged and supported me in creating the EdinPhoto web site  -  including descendants of photographers  -  researchers  -  providers of photographs and other material  Background notes on the research thal led up to the creation of this site  -   together with lists of new material added to the site since its launch.  Brief comments on how this site might be used  -  Just browsing?  -  Seeking specific information?  Please add your questions, suggestions or other comments to the Guest Book.  Links to other web sites  -  Photographic Societies  -  Photographic History  -  Family History  -  etc.  Click here to find the link to the Edinburgh Photogrpahic Society web site.

 

A selection of my photographs, many from Edinburgh throughout the year.   Also photos from Scotland, London, Iceland, Italy, Hong Kong and elsewhere    Many old maps of Edinburgh (Old Town, New Town, while City), Leith and Newhaven.  Includes several old transport maps and a comparison of old maps with recent aerial photos.   Old engravings, mailly of Edinburgh scenes.  Some from the 1820s, some from the 1890s,  some others - includes many hand-coloured examples from the 1820s.   News from Edinburgh today  -  Events, Collections, Buildings and Gardens, Transport   This site includes     1. Post card portraits taken in studios in Edinburgh:    2. Post card views either takeen/published by Ediburgh photographers or views of Edinburgh, or both.y Edinburgh    Views of Edinburgh, grouped into three sections:     1. Street views:    2. Buildings:    3. Around Edinburgh   Views of transport around Edinburgh  -  Horse drawn trams and buses, cable cars, electric trams, buses and a few railway photos.  Also several maps of Edinburgh's bus and tram routes.   Links to pages with Photos of Groups   Frequently Asked Questions

  Summary of the updates added to this site each month since the site was launched   Links to Dumbiedykes pages  Link to Granton pages  Link to Leith pages   Link to Newhaven pages   Links to Portobello pages   Link to My Recent Talks