Friday, 19 December 2008

North Bridge

This photo should be seen next to yesterday's one. North Bridge connects the Old Town on the right with the New Town on the left (at the Balmoral Hotel). It was originally built in 1772 but was reconstructed in the 1870s. The ravine it spans houses Waverley Station.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Balmoral Hotel

Opened in 1902 as the North British Hotel, the Balmoral hotel is one of Edinburgh's most famous landmarks. It was originally a railway hotel and at 1 Princes Street it still towers over Waverley station. Its name and ownership changed after a refurbishment in the 1980s, but the clock is still always set a few minutes fast so that travellers don't miss their trains (except for at New Year when it is set accurately!)

Interesting fact: Edinburgh author J K Rowling finished the last Harry Potter book at this hotel. Rowling left a signed statement written on a marble bust in her room saying; "JK Rowling finished writing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in this room (552) on 11th Jan 2007".

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Skating minister?

A lone skater on the Winter Wonderland icerink, following in the footsteps (skate marks?) of our own 'Skating Minister'.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Sunrise over North Bridge

On our way to work this morning we were treated to a beautiful sunrise - this was the view from North Bridge looking south-east at about 9am.

Sunday, 14 December 2008

More Christmas decorations

Another shot of the Christmas decorations stall on the German Market! Have you decorated your tree yet?

P.S. I was very honoured to receive a mention as one of the "20 Awsome Photography Blogs - Edinburgh, Scotland".

Saturday, 13 December 2008

West End

A view of the West End of Princes Street - the main, though not the best, shopping street in New Town - as seen from the Mound. The church on the left is St Cuthbert's on the corner of Lothian Road. In the distance you see Costorphine Hill, home to Edinburgh Zoo.

Friday, 12 December 2008

HBOS Takeover

On Friday it was announced that HBOS shareholders agreed with the takeover of their bank by Lloyds TSB. Shares fell by 23% but the HBOS headquarters on the Mound stood tall and proud, basking in the sun (OK this may have been the previous day...!).

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Old Town winter sun

A low winter sun over the Old Town skyline as seen from Princes Street whilst doing some (rather unsuccessful) Christmas shopping at lunchtime!

Monday, 8 December 2008

Victoria Primary School Fireworks

Earlier tonight I attended the switching on of the Christmas lights at our local primary school. It was lovely to see literally hundreds of people who had turned out to support the event and to watch the amazing fireworks!

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Wheel and Scott Monument

And how could there not be a picture of the wheel next to the Scott Monument, on Princes Street?

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Skating in the gardens

Some happy skaters on the Winter Wonderland ice rink in Princes Street Gardens.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Gorgeous decorations

Christmas decorations for sale at the market, along with lots of gluhwein, sausages, wooden toys and lots of other christmassy stuff.

Thursday, 4 December 2008

German Market

A freezing cold German market!

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Edinburgh Winter Wonderland

Every December, the Princes Street Gardens play host to Edinburgh's Winter Wonderland, a collection of attractions which includes an ice rink, caroussels, a German Market and of course the large ferris wheel next to the Scott Monument. Over the next few days I'll show you a few more pictures of what goes on - right now, my hands are freezing from being outside and I'm finding it quite hard to type!!

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Greyfriars Bobby

Outside Greyfriar's Churchyard stands the much-photographed sculpture of Bobby, the Sky Terrier who watched over the grave of its owner for 14 years. Rather than put up with all the attention, do you think Bobby might like to be somewhere else for a change? Taxi!

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Save the Titians!!

Diana and Actaeon and Diana and Callisto, both painted by Italian Renaissance artist Titian in the 16th century, rank among the greatest works of art anywhere in the world. They have been on display in the National Gallery of Scotland since 1945, but they are actually owned by the Duke of Sutherland, who has now decided to sell them. The National Galleries of Scotland have been offered first refusal, which means they must raise £50m by Christmas to buy the first work, and then another £50m by the end of next year. Whatever your views are on the value of art etc, these are two of the most magnificent works ever painted and they should stay on public view for everyone to enjoy. To find out more about the campaign, go to the NGS website.

So, I've done my bit for the cause. I will be away this week and haven't had the time to pre-load photos so expect to have to look at this one for a while! :-)

Friday, 21 November 2008

Cleaning in the nude?

A bit of fun for the Friday afternoon... I spotted this scene yesterday in the main hall of the edinburgh college of art. Whilst the man is cleaning the floors, the bloke in the nude is dusting his own pedestal while the other guy watches them get on with it!

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Same building at sunset

At 4.13pm yesterday I got an e-mail from Mr Dido who told me to run outside and get some pictures of this magnificent sunset. Which I did of course. Recognise the building?

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

National Museum of Scotland Tower

Yesterday I had a go on the digital SLR from work - way more sophisticated than my normal apparatus. I can't say I really got the hang of all the settings straight away, but this was one of my better attempts. This is the 'Tower', part of the National Museum of Scotland, built in 1998 to house the Scottish collections of the National Museums. For me, this is a very special building - not only is it a previous workplace, but it also is where Mr Dido and I got married.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Flowers on steps - you don't have to be French...

Can you spot this picture in yesterday's one?

Monday, 17 November 2008

Newhaven houses

This Newhaven close runs parallel to Fishmarket Square, between the Main Street (where I'm standing) to the Harbour. It was in these very same streets and closes that some of the first ever photographs (calotypes) were taken by David Octavius Hill and Robert Adamson, in the 1840s.

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Whale Brae

This is 'Whale Brae', the final stretch of Newhaven Road where it descends steeply into Newhaven. Apparently it was so called "because some fool tried to drag a whale up it". Well - I can tell you from experience that even dragging a couple of bags of shopping up this hill is no mean feat. Never tried a whale though.

Friday, 14 November 2008

A car in the New Town

Driving along Queen Street, the northern boundary of the original New Town, in easterly direction.

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Birds & Augustine's

Across the road from yesterday's picture I spotted this group of birds circling the spire of the Augustine Church. The building dates from 1861, and its architectural design incorporating Romanesque, Renaissance and Classical motifs caused quite a stir, with the 3-tier octagonal spire being ridiculed as a 'bridescake'. Nowadays of course it's an essential part of the Old Town skyline.

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Ironwork on George IV Bridge

This nice iron fencework can be found on the west side of George IV Bridge, here.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

It's finally here!!

Pardon my excitement, but never in my life have I lived a stone's throw from a shop that NEVER CLOSES!! The new Asda on the Waterfront opened yesterday and like many locals we went to have a nosy; by 10.30pm it was still pretty busy.

There has been much discussion over the design of the building; earlier versions did not get planning approval but this one has been described as 'sympathetic' and 'continental' - it is certainly not the usual big white box but instead has fairly unobtrusive wood cladding and glass panelling. And, more importantly, a fab fresh curry counter.

Monday, 10 November 2008

Oil Rig in Firth of Forth

This unlikely sight - an oil rig in the river Forth - was caught on camera by Mr Dido at the weekend. He believes it is there for maintainance. The land on the other side of the river is the 'Kingdom of Fife', or Fife for short. I know the quality of this picture is not great, but considering this is about 5 miles from where he was standing it's not that bad either!

Thursday, 6 November 2008


Peckhams is very much an Edinburgh - and Glasgow - institution. It's a longstanding chain of deli shops with everything you could wish for from a deli and more. This one is in Stockbridge and looking particularly pretty with that 'tuft' of flowers in the corner.

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

A Door in New Town

I took this picture just around the corner from yesterday's Circus Place, on Howe Street, as a typical example of a New Town door and facade. As you can see the road is sloping up quite steeply; in fact, most roads that lead south into the city centre slope up. Which is very useful to know if you aren't that great at orientation, because all you need to do is keep going up and you'll always end up in town without a problem!

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Circus Place

Driving along Circus Place in New Town this morning, I noticed that despite the colder weather there are still plenty of autumn colours around. Like many of the green spaces in the New Town,
the Royal Circus gardens (either side of this road, see here) are only accessible by those who live around them and who have a key. Remember the scene from Notting Hill in which Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts try to sneak into a private garden? Same thing.

Monday, 3 November 2008

The last roses

I took this picture a few weeks ago so I doubt these roses are still there today. This morning the car thermometer showed 3C so it's certainly getting cold!

Sunday, 2 November 2008

Gangways up!

House and office boats in Leith. The story goes that in order to get these boats into the harbour the hulls had to be sunk and dragged along the bottom of the harbour in order to fit underneath a low bridge. No idea if this is true, does anyone know?

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Theme Day: Books

Some of the many, many books in our house, including the 'No 1 Ladies Dectective Agency' series by Edinburgh-based author Alexander McCall Smith (though I've just noticed that the first book in the series is conspicuously absent).

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants in today's Theme day.

Friday, 31 October 2008

Tron exterior

Stone and drainpipe outside the Tron Kirk on the corner of the High Street and the Bridges. The building hasn't been used as a church for years, but instead served as an tourist information centre until this year when it remained shut. It desperately needs renovation but there's no agreement on a plan and, more importantly, no money.

Apologies for my failure to post over the last few days - will remedy the situation over the weekend.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Leaves once more

I couldn't help it - one more picture of leaves. It's getting really cold here now, with the first frost even in the city itself and with lots of snow in other parts of Scotland. Could it be winter already?!

Monday, 27 October 2008

Blog Awards

On Friday I was suprised but delighted to receive the "Blogging Friends Forever" award from Oslo Daily Photo, and the following day I received the Fabulous Fall award from Selma Daily Photo. It's so nice to realise that people are enjoying your blog as much as you are enjoying theirs! I now have to pass these awards on to five other bloggers.

The "BFF" award is passed on according to the following rules:

1. Only five people are allowed
2. Four have to be dedicated followers of your blog
3. One has to be someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world
4. You must link back to whoever gave you the award.

So, the award goes to:

1. Willits Daily Photo
2. Ramsay Daily Photo
3. Adelaide Daily Photo
4. A Brush With Art
5. No name necessary

The Fabulous Fall award goes to bloggers who have posted great autumn pictures. These are my picks:

1. Glasgow Daily Photo
2. Vancouver Daily Photo
3. Regina in Pictures
4. Photos from Haninge
5. Seattle One a Day

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Night over Newhaven

View of Newhaven village at night as seen from the lighthouse on the other side of the harbour.

Saturday, 25 October 2008

Sky over Newhaven

This is the sunset over Newhaven as seen from behind the old Fishmarket building, a few nights ago.

Thursday, 23 October 2008

Red or green

This tree can't quite make up its mind. The south-facing side has coloured whereas the north-facing side is still green - can anyone explain to me why this is?

Wednesday, 22 October 2008


Under cover of darkness? Or in the spotlight? This is Fleshmarket close, between Cockburn Street and Market Street, famous for housing two great pubs - the Halfway House and Jinglin' Geordie. It's also a convenient shortcut between Old Town and the train station.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Also Cockburn Street

... and this is the slightly seedier side of Cockburn Street (see yesterday's picture) - with tattoo parlours and alternative fashion shops existing alongside restaurants, cd shops and a very nice wine bar.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Cockburn Street

This is the top of Cockburn Street (pronounce Coe-burn or risk getting laughed at), which runs between the Royal Mile and Waverley Bridge.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Stones of Old College

Stones on the north-facing wall of Old College. How's that for an abstract work of art?

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Western Harbour developments?

This is a view of Western Harbour, looking towards the new developments at Platinum Point - part of the huge Waterfront regeneration that has been taking place in recent years. Unfortunately, some of the still undeveloped land may now be set to remain like this a while longer, following the recent news that one of the main developers has gone into administration as a result of the economic crisis.

Friday, 17 October 2008

More leaves

I couldn't help myself - some more autumn leaves for you! They are probably not the last either, so far the weather has been remarkable still and perfect for colouring the leaves throughout the city.

Thursday, 16 October 2008


This proverb is embedded in the walls of the Scottish Parliament - a great aspiration!! (and one I'd dearly love to master...)

Wednesday, 15 October 2008


When I am in need of a bit of peace and quiet I sometimes walk the Edinburgh Labyrinth in George Square gardens. It is based on the 13th-century labyrinth in the floor of Chartres cathedral and only has one clear path to the middle and back. Very relaxing!

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Leaves or lungs

Trees are the lungs of the world - anyone else ever noticed the similarity of branches and leaves to veins and tissue?!

Monday, 13 October 2008

Burning chimneys

Victorian chimney pots in front of a low autumn sun. When I was walking round taking pictures yesterday it really smelt of autumn; a combination of wet leaves on the ground and wood burning.