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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

 

Recollections

 Granton Harbour

   Edinburgh Waterfront  -  A walk down Middle Pier, Granton Harbour  -  3 August 2002 ©

Around 1960

 

1.

George Renton Jr
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Granton and Newhaven

Granton Trawlers

By Lorry to Ardrossan

By Lorry to Hull and Grimsby

Home Again

Declining Fishing Industries

2.

Stuart McCann
Swift's Creek, Victoria, Australia

Paton's Trawlers

3.

Ian Drysdale
Edinburgh

Paton's Lorries

Fishing at Rockall

Geordie Renton

George's Uncle Frances

4.

Ian Drysdale
Edinburgh

Austin 7

Coal Merchant

Deliveries

Firms at Granton Harbour

Grandparents

 

Recollections

1.

George Renton Jr.

Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Thank you to George Renton Jr., now living in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, for sending his memories of the fishing industry at Granton Harbour, Edinburgh, around 1960.

George wrote:

Granton and Newhaven

"We lived in Joppa, on the Firth of Forth, about 5 miles east of Edinburgh.   My Dad was from Leith. He drove a lorry, mainly around Newhaven and Granton, until we came to Canada in 1965.  We where in Canada, Dec 25th 1965. I have never been home since.

My Dad worked for a man named Robertson who had a large drayage business in Edinburgh from the time he was 8 years old.  He and all of his brothers where lorry drivers, Uncle Frank retired just a few years ago at age 73 when he broke his ankle jumping out off his lorry."

Granton Trawlers

   The Crew of a GrantonTrawler  -  Blue Bell ©

"My dad also worked for Walter Paton. They had trawlers, one was the 'Mary Payton'. 

The Paytons where connected with Thomas Devlin, though I don’t know what the relationship was between them. Perhaps Devlin just owned lorries?  Their garage was down toward the gas house and White Rose tank farm.

My dad also worked for Carnie and Croan.  Robert Croan owned boats.  Their garage was next door to Paytons as was Carnie and Gibb.

I would walk out onto the old Esparto Grass pier which was in poor condition at that time and the railway yard hadn’t seen much use."

By Lorry

Granton to Ardrossan

In the summertime I would spend a lot of time with my dad in the lorry. A typical day would be to load some of the lorries with clean fish boxes (marked P. P. on their ends), and then my dad with his lorry and one other would go to the ice house that was located up the road toward Queensferry. There, we would load crushed ice in burlap sacks and then head to Ardrossan  Harbour in Ayrshire, where we would wait for the trawler to come in with the tide.

At high water slack the Trawler would enter into the inner harbour, and proceed to a berth. I would usually go along for the ride. Once tied up, the  bags of ice would be spilled down a chute into the fish hold, followed by the boxes as needed.

At this time the crew would pack the catch into the boxes according to the order tickets, and the trawler’s cook and my dad and I would go ”up the street” and buy food enough to feed the crew, drivers, and other workers, and possibly the agents. Upon return to the trawler my dad and the cook would get down to work in order to feed about 20 men and one mischievous 10 year old.

I can still remember how hot it would be sitting in the galley of a steam trawler in July. ( “Hot enough to boil a monkey’s bum off” as Eric Idle would say.)

By Lorry

To Hull and Grimsby

After a big feed the lorries would back in a semi circle around the working sweep area of the trawlers' topping lift, and the boxes of fish would be hoisted up from the hold. There, the buyer's agent would look at the ticket that accompanied the box and direct it to the lorry that would be going to the designated market.

Once the lorry was loaded and tarped (covered with a tarpaulin), the drivers would meet for a pint before heading out to their various destinations such as Newhaven, Glasgow, Hull and Grimsby. The lorry my dad drove was the largest one the company owned. An A.E.C. Mandator or Mercury with an articulated B.T.C. 4-in-line trailer.

We always went to Hull or Grimsby. So off we went into the long daylight of summer. I having consumed enough Coke and Pepsi to float a Buckie Boat.  My dad would make me pee out the door as we pawed our way up hills like Shap and Beattock on the overnight run to the south.

The roads back then were not as they are today. They had just begun to build the “Dual Carriageway” between Edinburgh and Glasgow. The M1 was in existence in the south, and possibly the M6.  Everything else was 30 mph at best.

We would arrive at the market in the wee hours and the place would soon be a beehive of activity.  The workmen would always tease me about my accent, and refer to some battle that took place centuries ago in which England, according to them, gave Scotland a good kicking.

Once unloaded we would go to the fish box drop area and search though the piles for boxes marked P.P. on the ends, load what we could find and then head back North for home. On the way home,  Dad would always swear that I wasn’t coming with him ever again, but I would drive my mother nuts until she forced him to give in. Come to think of it, that’s just about how things worked at 'oor hoose' ."

Home Again

"We would return home that evening and my mates would be playing out in the street at football, tig, or hide and seek, totally oblivious to the world of adventure  and the sites and scenes that where still streaming between my ears, not to mention the slang and new swear words that were now part of my ever expanding vocabulary, like 'away ye go ya #%^&*$', or 'see you ya @#$^&'.

Totally exhausted from lack of sleep for almost 48 hours, I would be in tears the next morning when I awoke  to find that I had not heard my dad leave for work next morning without me.

He would arrive at the garage and the fish boxes would be unloaded at the wash rack, wash the lorry, and the cycle would begin again."

Declining Fishing Industries

"Those are my fondest childhood memories and a behind the scenes look at a segment of the fishing industry in the early 60’s.

 North Sea Oil was about to affect the way of life that had not changed for generations.  By the 70’s, it was ‘Game Over” for the majority of people working in and around the fishing industry. The “Common Market” was having an effect on the surface transportation industry.

Foreign lorries where taking over. Refrigerated inter-modal containers, and dwindling fish stocks, to name but a few of the elements, were challenging the way ports and harbours like Leith, Newhaven and Granton were conducting their business.

They say that Trucking (lorry driving) gets in your blood. That may be. I have been driving long distance in Canada for 30 years, and have witnessed the demise of the Canadian fishing industry in that time. I have two daughters. The circle shall be broken.  Enough said."

George Renton Jr., Mississauga, Ontario, Canada:  March 26, 2006

 

Recollections

2.

Stuart McCann

Swift's Creek, Victoria, Australia

George Renton Jr. (above) commented on Paton's trawlers at Granton.

Here, Stuart McCann provides further details.  Stuart writes:

Paton's Trawlers

"I sailed on several of Paton's boats, including the 'Mary Paton', the 'Walter Paton' and the 'Meta Paton'.  I can't remember the others.

The 'Margaret Paton' was lost late 1949 and  good friend of my Dad's went down with her.  I think his name was Goodall.  I recall the gossip at the time, because I was at sea myself then.

It was rumoured that because she had been built for the Admiralty, she was 'top heavy' and had probably rolled over in heavy seas."

Stuart McCann, Swift' Creek, Victoria, Australia:  January 10, 2008

 

Recollections

3.

John Reid

Granton, Edinburgh

Thank you to John Reid for leaving a message in the EdinPhoto guest book.

John wrote:

Paton's Lorries

"I have just been reading the recollections posted by George Renton Jnr of Canada about his father George (1. above).  They stirred my memory.

I used to work with his father Geordie Renton when he was a lorry driver with Walter K Paton and Thomas L Devlin.  In fact I did the run to Ardrossan and Ayr with him quite regularly in the summertime as second man.

Fishing at Rockall

This was when the Paton/Devlin trawlers fished at Rockall on the West Coast of Scotland where the fishing was better in summertime. They then landed the fish at Ardrossan and Ayr because it took too long to bring the trawlers back to Granton round the North of Scotland. It was easier to take the lorries through to Ardrossan and Ayr and bring the fish back by road. It gave the trawlers extra fishing time at Rockall.

Geordie Renton

I also remember when Geordie used to bring his laddies into the yard on a Saturday morning.  He spoke often about the family pet, a collie dog that the family had in the 1960s.  I remember when Geordie went to Canada in 1965 and also recall that he came back for a visit in the late 1960s.

He came to see us in Devlin's yard and we could hardly believe our eyes when Geordie walked in!

George's Uncle Frances

To George Renton Jnr.:  I knew your Uncle Francis too.  He worked for Alexanders in Tower Street, Leith and I worked next door for Saddlers Transport.  Francis used to give me a lift home to my mother's house in West Granton Road for my dinner. He went home for his own dinner in Muirhouse and then picked me up again outside his older sister's house, 2 stairs down from my mother's, at no 19 West Granton Road and took me back to work.

 Francis was a great Hibs fan and I remember him at Newhaven Market, walking through, shouting 'Hibees, Hibees' much to the amusement of the other workers.

The last time I saw Francis was one night at the Civil Service Club in Marine Drive, Muirhouse. He was up dancing and I could hardly believe how little he had changed since I last saw him in the late 1960s when I worked for Saddlers Transport.  We had a good blether about old times."

John Reid, Granton, Edinburgh

 

Recollections

4.

Ian Drysdale

Edinburgh

Thank you to Ian Drysdale who wrote:

Austin 7

"My first recollections of Granton Harbour would be from the late 1950s as a very wee boy sitting in his grandad's Austin 7"

Coal Merchant

"My grandfather was the Coal Merchant & Haulier, John Richardson.  He had his yard in beside the railway depot area at the top of the middle pier."

Deliveries

"From that day on, the area from Granton West Pier to Newhaven Harbour was about to become my playground, whether it be on my own or going with my dad on the lorry. I remember:

-  loads of Esparto Grass

-  rolls of roofing felt

concrete slabs

-  wood pulp

-  fish boxes, either empty or full of ice to go onto the trawler

-  work for the Northern Lighthouse"

Firms at Granton Harbour

"At tthat time, the harbour area supported a host of large and small firms.  Some of the names that spring to mind are:

-  Joe and Bob Croan

-  Devlin

-  Carnie and Gibb

-  Edward Ferry

-  Peter Kemp

to name but a few.

Grandparents

"At that time, my grandparents lived at 29 Boswall Quadrant. Then they moved to Grigor Avenue in the mid- 1960s.

The Coal and Haulage firm was sold in the 1970s due to my Grandfathers failing health.  He had delivered coal throughout the Trinity, Boswall, Pilton and Granton areas for 30-odd years, and seemed to be one of those folks who was known by all, no matter where you went."

Ian Drysdale, Edinburgh:  November 9, 2009

 

Pictures of Granton

Recollections  -  More Pages

Recollections  -   Contributors

  

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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