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Recollections

Craigmillar and Niddrie

1940s - 1950s
and some later recollections

1.

Irene ATKINS
Ashford, Kent, England

Old Women and Old Men

A Safe Place

German Plane

More German Planes

The White Hoose

2.

Cath TUFF
Warwickshire, England

The White House

3.

David THOMSON
Broughton, England

Craigmillar's Decline

Wauchope Estate

4.

Marion DEIGHAN
Edinburgh

My First TV

5.

John CLARK
Canada

Craigmillar Castle Gardens

6.

David BROWN
Craigmillar, Edinburgh

Schools and Housing

7.

Rod FRASER
Australia

Wauchope Estate

8.

Ralph MALTMAN
Canada

Home, School, Work

Neighbours

Jam Pieces

Shopping

Friends

9.

John CLARK
Canada

Growing up in Craigmillar

Family

10.

Jim COWAN

Station Road, Craigmillar

Canada

Friends from Craigmillar

10.

Reply 1.

George McROBBIE

Station Road, Craigmillar

10.

Reply 2.

Ragnar LOCHEN
Edinburgh

Station Road, Craigmillar

11.

Robert T KERR
British Columbia, Canada

Cairntows

Surroundings

Little France

12.

Jim CAMPBELL

Craigmillar to Canada

Craigmillar Schools

Return Visit to Edinburgh

Others from Craigmillar

13.

Archie FERGUSON
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Craigmillar to Canada

14.

David BAIN
Rotherham, South Yorkshire

Craigmillar Primary School

Street Cries

15.

Connie CAMPBELL
Durham, England

Harewood Crescent

16.

Julie SPEED
Wolverhampton, West Midlands, England

Craigmillar Castle Gardens

-  Summer Holidays

Parties at Nan's House

Return to Craigmillar

17.

Davis STEWART
Richmond, British Columbia, Canada

The Stewart Family

-  Family Photo

18.

Bobby McEWAN
Niddrie, Edinburgh

1939 to 2013

The Good Days

A Safe Place

Entertainment

Wartime

Changes

Our History

Wauchope Land

More Memories

Question: Shop

19.

Bobby McEWAN
Niddrie, Edinburgh

Memories

Barber

Chip Van

Rag & Bone Man

20.

Dave MURRAY
Penticton, British Columbia, Canada

Harewood Crescent

21.

June ROBERTSON (nee WOOD)
Arroyo Grande, California, USA

Blues Family

22.

Archie FERGUSON

Archie Ferguson

23.

Jim COWAN
New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada

Station Road

24.

Margaret CARNIE
(nee CUNNINGHAM)
Tasmania, Australia

Familiar Names

25.

Gus COUTTS
Duddingston, Edinburgh

The Niddrie Burn

 

Recollections

1.

Irene Atkins

Ashford, Kent, England

Thank you to Bryan Gourlay, Biggar, Lanarkshire, Scotland,  for sending me these memories of Craigmillar in the early 1940s, written by his aunt, Irene Atkins.

Thank you also to Irene, who wrote:

Old Women and Old Men

"The Craigmillar I grew up in, in the early 1940s, is not the place it has become today. It was a world of women and old men, most of the young men having volunteered or been called up to fight for king and country.

The young women went to work to help boost the pittance they received from whichever service their husbands fought with. The old women stayed at home to look after the children of their sons and daughters.

The old men sat on the various benches around the area and regaled us children with tales of their daring do in ' the last one ' in such places as Paschendale, Cambrai and Vimy Ridge, whilst their wives used their meager sugar rations to provide us with such delights as toffee apples and barley twists."

A Safe Place

"Craigmillar was as safe a place as any then. We children played anywhere and everywhere without a care. I do not ever recall a burglary, break-in, child abduction or murder in my day.

The shops neither used shutters or grills when they closed after the day's business, and we only had one policeman called Bobby Munroe.

German plane

"However, exciting things did happen. Such as the German plane that crashed into the derelict grounds of Lady Wauchope's estate.

The other children and I saw the remains of the plane being loaded on to two flat-bed lorries. The very young German airman, who was the only survivor of the crash, was dragged from his hiding place in the woods and frog marched, with hands tied behind his back, covered in dirt and blood, to the police box at the bottom of the road.

I was unable to understand at that time why people jeered and spat on him. I must confess I felt sorry for the poor young man who must have been terrified out of his wits.

I also remember being taken to the gates of Portobello cemetery (Milton Road) to see the corteges of his dead companions pass through, where they might still lie today."

More German Planes

"I remember hanging out of the window with my mother watching a dog-fight in the sky above, with the lights out of course. Also, being wrapped in a huge pink quilt and going to the air raid shelter when the siren sounded, coming back hours later to find the cat had eaten our supper of fish and chips (mother nearly killed it).

I remember going with my mother to New Craighall to see the skeletal remains of the bombed-out houses where a German airman jettisoned his load over the village, having missed his target of Leith docks.

Irene Atkins, Ashford, Kent, England, formerly Wauchope, Craigmillar and Burdiehouse

with acknowledgement to Brian Gourlay, Biggar, Lanarkshire, Scotland, April 9, 2006

 

Recollections

2.

Cath Tuff

Warwickshire, England

Thank you to Cath Tuff, Warwickshire, England, who used to live at Craigmillar, for sending her memories.

Cath wrote:

The White House

   The Whitehouse Public House, Craigmillar ©

"My husband lived in Craigmillar from 1937.  He has great memories of the White Hoose as a boy.  He watched the fights from the window in the Loan (Craigmillar Castel) and  had his first pint of heavy there.

We moved to Niddrie Mill and had a few good laughs and close shaves there.

We now live in England and my husband can't get about, but we still talk about Craigmillar, and tell our grandsons about the White Hoose, and soon our great grandchildren will know all about it."

Cath Tuff, Warwickshire, England:  December 12, 2006

 

Recollections

3.

David Thomson

Broughton, Edinburgh

Thank you to David Thomson for sending his memories of Craigmillar.

David wrote:

Craigmillar's Decline

"I was born in the Craigmillar area and regretfully have seen the decline in the quality of life in the area.

There used to be full employment with 7 Breweries, Coal Pits. Steele's Sanitaryware manufacturing, etc. 

 The cows were brought down from the Castle Farm to be milked and folk won awards for Best Garden etc.  I delivered milk and never had any milk stolen from my barrow!  Folk left the money or token outside their door and it was never stolen. 

I have seen Greendykes being built, demolished, built again and now being demolished again, and I'm not even pensionable age! There's more decent folk in Craigmillar but its the age-old adage of the few bad apples ruin the box."

Wauchope Estate

"I have a book on General Wauchope and used to play in the Wauchope estate - a wonderful place,  The old cemetery is where General Wauchope brought a drummer or bugle boy who had been badly injured, back home from South Africa to have a decent place to die.

When the lad died, he buried him in the family graveyard at Niddrie.  Fascinating the history of a wee place in Edinburgh which has a vast wealth in history of industry and village life.  General Wauchope has a statue which stands at the junction of Market Street/Mound."

David Thomson, Broughton, Edinburgh:  February 15, 2007

 

Recollections

4.

Marion Deighan

Edinburgh

Thank you to Mary Deighan who wrote:

My First TV

"When I first got a TV in the late 1950s the screens were small and the gimmick was to buy an enlarger like a magnifying glass.

A guy came to the door.  He was well dressed and was not from the Edinburgh area.  In my opinion he was a conman, as I can spot a conman miles away.

He said: 'You can rent this magnifier for 2 shillings a week. I'll send one of my agents next week to pick up the payments.

When he saw and heard my husband and found out who my sons were, he got a bit nervous and I never saw him or his so-called agent ever again.

The glass screen was great as it magnified my wee TV to a 32 inch screen without being a blur.  It was one of the best bargains I had in Craigmillar.

I also used knitting needles to get a good picture until I got an aerial mounted on the roof."

Marion Deighan, Edinburgh:  March 29, 2007

Marion is the aunt of Eric Gold who has sent many recollections to the EdinPhoto web site.  Marion used to live in Arthur Street, Dumbiedykes then in Harewood Road, Craigmillar

 

Recollections

5.

John Clark

Canada

Thank you to John Clark who wrote:

Craigmillar Castle Gardens

"My Auntie Lizzie lived in Craigmillar Castle Gardens. People reading this in Hollywood would probably think, 'Wow, I simply must buy a house there.'

Sorry Maam, it wasn't that fancy, but it sure was a lot of fun. We would play football in the park next to the brewery,  It's still there.

We would go to free movies in the nissen huts from the war, and watch great movies for free.  It was freezing cold, but who cared if you were watching a free movie."

John Clark, Canada:  April 1, 2007

 

Recollections

6.

David Brown

Craigmillar, Edinburgh

Thank you to David Brown who wrote:

Schools and Housing

"I go back to Craigmillar 1938, when it was a great place to live.

Peffermill School was being built. We had to go to Prestonfield and the tin school, until it was ready.

People were poor but honest, with large families.  All you hear now is 'deprived area'. 

I've lived in the area for fifty years, ,and own my own home.  I'm very comfortably off because I worked for it."

David Brown, Craigmillar, Edinburgh:  August 12, 2008

 

Recollections

7.

Rod Fraser

Australia

Thank you to Rod Fraser who wrote:

Wauchope Estate

"I used to live in Wauchope Terrace in Craigmillar, back in the 1950s.  I used to play in the old Wauchope Estate grounds then and have many great memories of the time.

 I have a rough idea of where the paths went and what was there.  I was wondering if you have any maps of the layout of the old estate before the housing development?"

Rod Fraser, Australia:  August 7, 2008

Reply

For old maps of the area, I recommend contacting the Map Library of the National Library of Scotland.

Here is their email address.

Peter Stubbs:  August 7, 2008

 

Recollections

8.

Ralph Maltman

Canada

Thank you to Ralph Maltman who wrote:

Home, School, Work

"I grew up in Craigmillar from around 1938 or '39, and finally left to go to Canada in 1957.

We lived at 21 Craigmillar Castle Terrace.  I attended Peffermill  School, then moved on to Niddrie Marischal.  Later, I worked in the pits at Loanhead."

Neighbours

"I recall many happy memories living in Craigmillar and I can't recall any bad times.  Our parents used to go around the stair, either borrowing money for the gas meter or asking for a drop of milk or sugar."

Jam Pieces

"I remember having 'pieces' thrown out the window.  They they were usually jam only, not butter and jam. We never got butter, that was usually only for our dad.  But we thought nothing of that.  That's just the way it was."

Shopping

"We used to shop at the local shops  for our messages. The famous one I recall was Mrs Flett's on the main road in CraigmillarI think her name was Jean and her husband was Charlie."

Friends

"What great memories of those times, meeting all our friends on the corner of the Terrace and the Grove

the Andersons

the Wilsons

-  the Moyes

-  the Gunns

-  the Norrises.

So many memories.  There was nothing wrong with Craigmillar when we were growing up.  What happened?"

Ralph Maltman, Canada:  October 11, 2008

 

Recollections

9.

John Clark

Canada

Thank you to John Clark who wrote:

Growing up in Craigmillar

"I lived in and visited Craigmillar for long periods of time in the late 1940s, to stay with my cousins. Craigmillar was a great place to grow up and to play as a kid.

Oh yes, the young people were tough.  They had to be.  But they were honest and reliable in the majority."

Norris Family

"My cousins were:

-  Jim Norris

George Norris

Billy Norris.

Unfortunately Billy was killed in a terrible accident with a rocket flare gun that he and some friends had acquired and were fooling around with.

George died a few years ago of heart troubles, but I like to believe that Jim is still around and with us."

QUESTION

"Do you know Jim?  If so, please tell him I am asking for him.

Anyway, long live Craigmillar, it gave me many, many happy years in my young days."

Auntie Lizzie

"My Auntie Lizzie had a huge family, from two different husbands.  They were, starting at the eldest, and I hope I get this right:

-  Davey Bullock

-  Jessie Bullock

-  Nettie Bullock

-  Anna Bullock

-  Isabell Bullock

-  Stewart Norris

-  Billy Norris

-  Jim Norris

-  Mary Norris

-  George Norris

-  Marjorie Norris.

She also had one child who died as a baby.

I was in the age group between Billy and Jim. So you can imagine how entertaining life was at my Auntie Lizzie's place, and why I love Craigmillar so much.  Oh, happy days."

John Clark, Canada:  October 13+15, 2008

 

Recollections

10.

Jim Cowan

New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada

Thank you to Jim Cowan who wrote:

Station Road, Craigmillar

"From 1938 until I joined the Air Force in 1959, I lived in what was then Station Road, but was later changed to Peffer Street, Craigmillar.

We used to have quasi rivalry when at bonfire time lads from Niddrie would try to set our collections of old furnishings and paper prematurely alight"

Canada

"I joined the Air Force in 1959, then five years later I ventured to the west coast of Canada, and here I still am, at New Westminster, near Vancouver.

Noreen Campbell, wife of Jim Campbell who lived at the same address as I did, 13 Station Road and now live in Edmonton, Canada, sent me this site just a half-hour ago."

Friends from Craigmillar

"I always wonder what became of:

-  my good buddy Charlie Scott.

-  his brothers Ian and David.

Jackie Loch.

David Crow.

Jeanette Mcdonald.

Jill Murray.

-  Big Donald McPherson.

-  Helen Meek.

-  Sheila Anderson.

-  Irene Allard.

a whole lot of others.

Jim Cowan, New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada:  January 24, 2009

Reply to Jim Cowan?

Perhaps you recognise yourself or somebody else in Jim's list of names above.  If so, and if you'd like to get in touch with Jim, please email me, then I'll pass your message on to him.

Thank you.    -  Peter Stubbs:  January 24, 2009

Reply 1

Thank you to George McRobbie for writing to say that in the 1940s, he also lived in Station Road Craigmillar.

 

Recollections

10.

Reply

1.

George McRobbie

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Thank you to George McRobbie who wrote:

Station Road, Craigmillar

"I also lived in Station Road, Craigmillar in the 1940s and haver been wondering where Jim Cowan ended up since his retirement.  I would be happy to reconnect with him."

George McRobbie, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada:  July 18, 2013

I've now passed on to George the latest email address that I have for Jim Cowan.  I hope they will be able to get in touch with each other.

Peter Stubbs, Edinbegh:  July 26, 2013

 

Recollections

10.

Reply

2.

Ragnar Lochen

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Thank you to Ragnar Lochen who wrote:

15 Station Road

My Great Grandparents & Family

"Jim Cowan wrote (above) about Station Road Craigmillar.  My family stayed in stair No.15, Station Road.  In the early-1920s, my Great Granny & Grandad William and Catherine Runciman lived there with their family:

-  my Uncle Willie and my Uncle Jack

their sisters Ella, Joey, Rena (my Nana) and Edith."

My Nana & Family

"All the siblings fled the nest, apart from my Nana who managed to get a house across the landing in No.15, where:

-  my Dad, Raymond

-  my Uncles, Raynard and Derek

all grew up."

My Uncle Willie

"My Uncle Willie moved around the corner and into Peffer Bank where he had the first of his 2 children:

-  Irene and Billy Runciman.

View from No.15 towards Arthur's Seat

"I have vivid memories of that stair at No.15 in the 1970s.   I canít remember when it was demolished but this photo shows the view outwards towards Arthur's Seat from No 15."

The view from 15 Station Road, Craigmillar, looking towards Arthur's Seat, Holyrood Park, Edinburgh
© Ragnar Lochen, Edinburgh

Ragnar Lochen, Edinburgh:  April 11, 2014 (2 emails)

  

Recollections

11.

Robert T Kerr

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Thank you to Jim Cowan who wrote:

Cairntows

"My grandad (Bert Kerr) and his family lived at Cairntows (opposite Luci's Ice cream) As kids ,we loved a '99 ice cream (with choc. flake) in front of the television.

We loved visiting my Gran (Helen Wallace) Kerr, for the school holidays. I loved going to sleep at night, hearing the traffic outside (as we were based in the countryside at Loch Lomond) and waking to tea and digestives."

Surroundings

"I remember a beautiful gypsy woman who stayed in trailers (caravan) towards Portobello.

I remember the smell of breweries around, and the bowling green over gran's garden wall.

There was a light blue bubble car in the garage.

I remember my dad, Robert (Robin) Dundas and:

-  his brothers, Dundas and Colin

-  his sisters, Heather (very dark hair), Hazel (vey blonde hair)

-  Colin's wife, Christine ,and their children, Raymond and Grant

young Dundas and Katriona."

Little France

"I remember Little France and the Castle Farm and bailing in the fall (autumn). I remember my grandad watching steeplechasing on the television.

Those were the days!"

Robert T Kerr, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

 

Recollections

12.

Jim Campbell

St Albert, Alberta, Canada

Thank you to Jim Campbell who sent me these three photos of his schools at Craigmillar:

Jim wrote:

Craigmillar to Canada

"Jim Cowan (10 above) now living in Vancouver and I both grew up in Craigmillar, at 13 Station Road.

I left Edinburgh in 1956, living first in Toronto, and later in Edmonton, Alberta.  Presently my wife and I live in St. Albert, a smaller city that is almost attached to Edmonton. 

My sister, Helen Fowler, who now lives in Peterborough, Ontario, also sent a message about Cairntows  Craigmillar to the Edinphoto web site a while ago.

Craigmillar Schools

"I dug around and found these school pictures that you might like to add to the site.

Craigmillar Primary School

1950

Craigmillar Primary Schol Class  -  1949 ©

Craigmillar Primary School

1950

   Craigmillar Primary School Class ©

Niddrie Marischal School

1952 or 1953

   Niddrie Marischal School  -  Dinner Monitors  -  1951 ©

 

Return Visit to Edinburgh

 I have been back to Scotland quite a few times, the last visit in September last year.  As always I had to make my way back to Craigmillar, and found the old place undergoing major renovations.  I was able to walk through and picture it as it had been 52 years prior. 

What a pleasure to see it being restored, and made comfortable for new families."

Others from Craigmillar

"I notice that an Archie Ferguson replied to a message from Margaret Calder about Craigmillar Primary School.  I wonder if he might be the same guy I ran into in Toronto about 1959.  He had attended Niddrie Marischal at the same time I did.

Also in Toronto, I once ran into Maureen Hill, who was at Craigmillar School with me.  Thanks for the lovely memories your site evokes, and of the opportunities to share our past and present."

Jim Campbell, St Albert, Alberta, Canada:  March 27, 2009

 

Recollections

13.

Archie Ferguson

Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.

Thank you to Archie Ferguson who replied:

Craigmillar to Canada

"I commend Jim Campbell (12 above) on his memory of our chance meeting in Toronto.  I recall he was driving a small sports car and the year was 1959.

The pictures  of school  he sent were priceless.  I don't know if I was in his class.  There are a couple of images that look like me, but I can't tell.

I hope Jim reads this,  It may warm him up on these cold prairie days.  My wife was born in Edmonton, but I swept her away to Vancouver Island."

Archie Ferguson, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada:  June 19, 2009

 

Recollections

14.

David Bain

Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England

Thank you to David Bain who wrote:

Craigmillar Primary School

"I only went to Craigmillar Primary School while we lived with my grandparents in Harewood Drive for a short period in about 1956.

I don't remember anything at all about the school, but I do still remember the toffee cups - toffee lollies in a paper cup - sold at the school gate. The man sold them from a big hand basket; the same kind of basket rolls were sold from, as I recall."

Street Cries

"The mention of rag and bone men brought back memories of the rag man and his call of "toysforwoollenraaaaags!"- all one word, of course!

Another memory is of the roll van of Dalziels of Airdrie - quite how they made a profit selling a vanload of rolls from Airdrie to Gilmerton remains a mystery.

Their cry was "Deee-els Row-els!"

David Bain, Craigmillar, Edinburgh:  September 3,

 

Recollections

15.

Connie Campbell

Durham, England

Thank you to Connie Campbell who wrote:

Harewood Crescent

"I was born in 1940 and lived at 13 Harewood Crescent, Niddrie Mains. Edinburgh.

I had five sisters.  The eldest passed away in March 2007.  The others are:

-  Sylvia

-  June

-  Margaret

-  Moira.

We all went to Craigmillar primary school then Niddrie Marischal  secondary school.

My dad was Harry Young, an active member of the community"

Connie Campbell, Durham, England:  December 3, 2009

 

Recollections

16.

Julie Speed

Wolverhampton, West Midlands, England

Thank you to Julie Speed who wrote:

Craigmillar Castle Gardens

"My Scottish family were brought up in Craigmillar from around 1950 until No.9 Craigmillar Castle Gardens was demolished.

They were a family of nine - George, Chris, Tom, Jimmy, Ann, Gloria, Margaret, Freddie and Frankie Armstrong. My mom is Margaret and she left when she joined the army in about 1963."

Summer Holidays

"My 3 sisters and I spent many happy summer holidays in Craigmillar:

buying ice cream from Rudi the ice cream van or from Lucaís little shop

climbing Arthurís Seat and running amok in and out of the blocks of flats opposite the gardens while my parent had some peace down in England."

Parties at Nan's House

"My Mom went to school with Marion Cameron and my uncles often brought their friends to parties at my Nanís house, Jimmy Munroe, Tam Ford, Ellen Hawkes to name a few!"

Return to Craigmillar

"I visit Craigmillar regularly as my Uncle George was moved to Castle Gait during the regeneration. Yes, its changed but the memories of the people and the fun we had make that unimportant.

Does anyone know my Mom's family?"

Julie Speed, Wolverhampton, West Midlands, England: March 14, 2011

 

Recollections

17.

Davis Stewart

Richmond, British Columbia, Canada

Thank you to Davis Stewart who wrote:

The Stewart Family

"I am looking for descendants of my Great Uncle James Stewart and his wife Katie Jane Trench Thomson.

They are likely to have lived at 15 Station Road, Craigmillar, from the early-1900's through the 1950s.

His brother John and sister Lilias Tait Stewart are  also likely to have lived in the area.

Here is a picture of my grandfather and uncle from the 1940s."

Family Photo

"Here is a picture of my grandfather, William Stewart, and my uncle, Richard Stewart, taken in the 1940s."

Davis Stewart's uncle and grandfather from Craigmillar, Edinburgh ©

Davis Stewart, Richmond, British Columbia, Canada:  July 29 + August 14, 2012

 

Recollections

18.

Bobby McEwan

Niddrie, Edinburgh

Thank you to Bobby McEwan for sending his memories of living in Niddrie for almost 75 years.

Bobby wrote:

1939 to 2013

"I've lived in Niddrie all my life and I can remember the good and the hard days."

The Good Days

"The good days were when Niddrie was first built.  H.R.H. Princess Mary was the V.I.P. guest on 17 September 1930.

I wasnít born till 1939I can remember back to 1944 and the War Years.  Niddrie / Craigmillar was a safe and healthy place to bring up a family."

A Safe Place

"In those days, families went out and left the house doors open. There was no fear of the house being robbed as everyone knew each other.   It was a close community, everyone helping each other with any problems they had.  No matter what it was, help was always at hand.

It was a safe place to live because most of the traffic was horse- drawn carts or wheel-barrows."

Entertainment

Our entertainment was:

-  a visit from a one man band named Stevie Cardonie,

-  the Salvation Army, or

a visit to the Rio picture house to see Batman and Robin, Flash Gordon or Superman.

I remember that the adults' entertainment was:

-  the pictures,

-  the White House, or

a dance at the local hall that stared the local Niddrie tenantís band, Dickie Knox Trio."

Wartime

"When the war siren went we all went to the Anderson shelter. We were packed into the shelters like sardines in a tin, with very little food or clean clothing.  It was Hell!

Most of the food was in powder form, such as eggs, milk and soup, and most of the food, sweets and clothing was rationed.
I remember the old ration book andthe sweet and clothing coupons.

The food was bought at St Cuthbertís Store in Craigmillar

-  Most of the clothing was bought at Mr Gordon's shop in Wauchope Crescent, or Peggy Duncanís In Craigmillar, or Parker's store in Bristo street."

Changes

"The area has changed over the years.  I remember that in Niddrie Mains Terrace, there was:

-  the Salvation Army Hall

and in Hay Drive there were:

-  the Scouts' Hut that was in Niddrie Mains Terrace

-  St Aiden's Church

-  the Dumfriesshire Dairy

-   the St Cuthbert's store.

These have all become history, as have some of the other other old places that were in our area:

- schools

-  mines

-  breweries

-  farms

-  pig farms

-  etc."

Our History

"Other important parts of our history were:

-  The Duddingston 'Prisoner of War Camp'

- General Andrew Gilbert's Wauchope family estate, I believe the family ownership can go as far back as the 16th century."

Wauchope Land

"Housing at Niddrie Marischal and Niddrie House was built on the Wauchope land, but I still remember the historical family mansion

It was a very special attraction for local people and tourists.  The house was surrounded with flower beds and fruit trees and was a haven for wild life. Unfortunately the mansion and land was bought by the council in 1970.

All that remains to remind us of the Generalís family and the General's bravery are the tomb, the graveyard, and a memorial cross in the garden of the local Niddrie Mill School .

The General was killed on 11 December 1899 as he led his men Into battle at Magersfontein, during the Boer War.

More Memories

There is much more I could add.  I'm in the process of writing a bookIf anyone wants to know anything else about Niddrie, I would be happy to help bring back the memories of those times that have long gone but will never be forgotten.

Question

Shop

Can anybody remember the first shop in Niddrie Mains Terrace?  It was placed at the side of the Bingham tunnel and was a caravan on wheels.  ***

 I believe the owner was a Mr Walker.  That was before Mrs Flockhart, Mrs Lettie or Mrs Gribbens.

***  Please see Recollections 26 below for a reply to this question

Bobby McEwan, Niddrie, Edinburgh:  February 8, 2013

 

Recollections

19.

Bobby McEwan

Niddrie, Edinburgh

Thank you to Bobby McEwan for sending more of his memories of growing up in Niddrie.

Bobby wrote:

Memories

"I've been reading all the stories about Craigmillar and Niddrie on this page.  It's great to hear al the things that the people remember.  It brings back lots of memories to everyone who lived in the area, past and present.

I've lived in Niddrie Mains since 1939 and still live there.  I remember all the things that have been mentioned by many of the people above."

Barber

"My 'sixpenny barber' was a man called Tony Rizzie from Hay Road."

Chip Vans

"We had two chip vans in our area:

Willie Mackey, from Danderhall, and

Joe the Pole, as he was called."

Rag & Bone Man

"My Grandfather was the first rag and bone man in Edinburgh.  He was known as 'Balloon Bobby'.  Does anybody have a photograph of him?"

Bobby McEwan, Niddrie, Edinburgh:  February 8, 2013

Reply to Bobby McEwan?

If you know of any photos of Bobby's grandfather, please email me to let me know, then I'll pass on your message to Bobby.

                Thank you.

Peter Stubbs, EdinburghFebruary 8, 2013

 

Recollections

20.

Dave Murray

Penticton, British Columbia, Canada

Thank you to Dave Murray, now living in British Columbia, for posting a message in the EdinPhoto Guestbook.

Dave wrote:

Harewood Crescent

Home, School and Friends

"I was born at 2 Harewood Crescent in 1938.  I went to school with Jim Cowan who  lived on Station Road.  I was in the Boys' Brigade with him.

My best friend was Jim Robertson.  He now lives in Portobello."

Our Street

"I remember the fish man with his pony and trap delivering down Harewood Crescent, and the boxing club at the foot of the street."

Dave Murray, Penticton, British Columbia, Canada:
Message posted in EdinPhoto Guestbook Jun 16, 2013

I was pleased to see that today Jim Cowan (who Dave Murray mentions in the first paragraph above) has now posted a reply to the message that Dave Murray added to the EdinPhoto guestbook on June 16.

 

Recollections

21.

June Robertson (nee Wood)

Arroyo Grande, California, USA

Thank you to June Robertson for posting a reply in the EdinPhoto guestbook, in response to a message posted in the guestbook by Norma Ford on June 30, 2013.

June wrote:

Blues Family

"Does anybody remember a family in Craigmillar by the name of Blues.  This was a long, long time ago.

The mother was Chrissie Blues.  She had lots of kids.  Some of them are still around.  They sold fruit and veggies from a barrow on Chambers Street, right by the Bridges.

It's a long shot, but you never know!"

June Robertson (nee Wood), Arroyo Grande, California, USA:
Reply posted in the EdinPhoto guestbook on 29 July 2013, in response to a message posted in the guestbook by Norma Ford on 30 June, 2013.

Recollections

22.

Archie Ferguson

Thank you to Archie Ferguson who replied to Dave Murray's message in Recollections 20 above.

Archie wrote

Archie Ferguson

"Hi Davie.  I'm glad to hear you're still above ground.  I've tried many times to find you in and around Vancouver, to no avail."

Archie Ferguson:  Message posted in EdinPhoto guestbook:  June 24, 2013

I've passed on Dave's email address to Archie, so I hope that they have made contact with each other by now.

Peter Stubbs,  Edinburgh:  August 4, 2013

 

Recollections

23.

Jim Cowan

Westminster, British Columbia, Canada

Jim Cowan also replied to Dave Murray's message in Recollections 20 above.

Jim wrote

Station Road

"This is braw! The Jim Cowan you refer to is well and living in New Westminster BC Canada.

Through this site I just made contact with George McRobbie who, a long time ago, lived as I did on Station Road in Craigmillar"

Jim Cowan, Westminster, British Columbia, Canada: 
Message posted in EdinPhoto guestbook:  August 4, 2013

 

Recollections

24.

Margaret Carnie (nee Cunningham)

Tasmania, Australia

Margaret Carnie tells me that she has just learnt about the EdinPhoto site from her brother, Frank Cunningham who lived in Craigmillar from 1938 until 1963.

Margaret wrote:

Familiar Names

"I've been reading some of the memories from 'Craigmillarites'.  So many of the names are so familiar, I can almost see them:

-  Ralph Maltman (from the same stair as Jacky Murray)

-  The Fultons, who lived in Castle Grove.

All were friends of my brother, Alec, sadly no longer with us.

I could go on for hours, remembering Craigmillar and all the good times and good people that lived there."

Margaret Carnie (nee Cunningham), Tasmania, Australia:  January 7, 2024
Formerly Castle Terrace then Castle Gardens, Edinburgh

 

Recollections

25.

Gus Coutts

Duddingston, Edinburgh

Margaret Carnie tells me that she has just learnt about the EdinPhoto site from her brother, Frank Cunningham who lived in Craigmillar from 1938 until 1963.

Margaret wrote:

Niddrie Burn Walk

1940s

"As a youngster in the 1940s, I can remember my mother taking me for walks along the Niddrie Burn from Duddingston Park South, just before The Jewel Cottages, going East."

A Pleasant Country Walk

"This was before they built:

-  any of the Magdalene houses on the left

the development which includes Hosie Rigg

-  The Milton Link, Asda and what became Big W

It was, in effect, a pleasant country walk."

Looking East

"Looking to the east, one was faced by a high railway embankment which carried the Lothian Line.  Beyond that, at ground level were more railway lines:

 the 'South Sub''

-  the Waverley Line and

the lines to Niddrie

The Niddrie Burn ran under the embankment and inder the other lines in a tunnel."

Path from the Jewel Cottage

"The path from The Jewel Cottages ran along the right-hand bank of the burn, but just before the embankment there was a bridge across the burn and a path running diagonally, about half way up the side of the embankment in the direction of Milton Road.

At the top of the path was a pedestrian tunnel through the embankment which led directly on to a footbridge over the Waverley etc. line and down to ground level and Brunstane Road South.  As I remember, there was open countryside to the right."

Any Photos?

"I've never seen any photos of this area, and wonder if anybody has any.  I hope somebody will be able to turn some up.

What I'm particularly keen to see are any photos taken:

 near the end of the walk, around where 'The Big W' car park is nowadays."

-  in the area near the embankment, particular looking east towards the embankment and tunnels."

Gus Coutts, Duddingston, Edinburgh:  January 10, 2014

Reply to Gus

If you know of any photos that might be of interest to Gus, please email me, then I'll give you his email address and you will be able to send a message direct to him.

Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh:  January 10, 2014

 

Recollections

26.

George Devlin

Poole, Dorset England

Thank you to George Devlin for replying to the question about the shop at Niddrie / Craigmillar that Bobby McEwan asked at the end  of his Recollections 18 above.

George wrote:

Reply

Bobby McEwan

'The Caravan'

"I know Bobby and his family  They lived in the same street as me - Niddrie Mains Terrace.  Bobby was in the same class as me at school.

Bobby asked about the first shop at Niddrie / Craigmillar.  In fact it was a caravan owned by an ex-Policeman called Fraser who lived opposite me at 44 Niddrie Mains Terrace, the same stair as the O'Briens.

Then, Mrs Lockhart built a tin shop, but the name stuck and the locals always referred to it as 'The Caravan'."

George Devlin, Poole, Dorset, England:  May 21, 2014

 

Edinburgh and Leith map, 1940 -  Craigmillar and Niddrie section, with key to housing areas ©

Notes and Maps showing areas
of Craigmillar and Niddrie

 

 

Recollections

Craigmillar 1940s + 1950s       Craigmillar 1960s + 1970s        Craigmillar 1970s + 1980s

Craigmillar Castle        Craigmillar Castle Estate        Niddrie      Edinburgh

Photos

Niddrie and Craigmillar Photos       Edinburgh Photos

 

 

 

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