William Stewart's

coaches of Dalkeith




Mat Rooney

Ayrshire, Scotland

William Stewart's

coaches of Dalkeith

Thank you to Matt Rooney, New Cumnock. Ayrshire, Scotland, for the recollections one of his many jobs in and around Edinburgh  -  driving buses:

Matt writes:

Saughton Prison

"My recollections of Saughton were of  arriving at the prison very early to collect a few prisoners and their warders and take them to the 'tatties'.

The furthest we went was round about Berwick.  The prisoners were sort of trustee's, or they didn't have long to go before the end of their sentences, so they were allowed out to work on selected farms, where they helped to lift the tatties.

I do remember taking one of the trustees into a local village for messages for the farmer's wife.  The farmer fed them each day.  All I had to do was drop them off, and either myself or another driver would collect them and take them back to Saughton.

The Return Journey

"Another time I was at one farm and the prisoners and the warders were late in finishing up for the night.  I had to take a shortcut along Princes Street, which was normally taboo at that time as the route was mapped out to avoid the City at all costs, but it was unavoidable.

Now the buses that we the Drivers drove were the old type with wind-down handles for the windows, so we were told by the boss to unscrew these, so that the prisoners couldn't open them.  But, within 2 minutes of knowing that they would be going along Princes Street they had all the windows open and were whistling at all the girls and ladies in the street.

Fortunately, none of them attempted to escape, as they could easily have disappeared into the crowds.  Needless to say, that never happened again."

More Jobs

"I moved jobs after that as I was getting bored with the non-variety of the firm's schedule.  I was always looking for little adventures and when I couldn't get them I made excuses to get away.

The visits to the farms did aid my pocket now and then as I was always getting offers of bags of tatties for helping them out, and a local chip shop was always grateful for the tatties"

Matt Rooney, ( now aged 73), Ayrshire, Scotland:   August 2005




John Hadden


William Stewart's

coaches of Dalkeith

Thank you to John Hadden, Edinburgh, for the following information after reading this page about William Stewart's coaches of Dalkeith

John writes:

"It's a small world.  William Stewart was my grandfather. He married the youngest daughter of Thomas Wallace, the photographer in Dalkeith. How about that!"

John Hadden, Edinburgh.  31 August 2005


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