Holyrood Road


Holyrood Square




Bob Henderson

Burdiehouse, Edinburgh

Thank you to Bob Henderson who wrote:

Holyrood Road


"I was talking with an old friend today and he asked me if I remembered getting a canter up Holyrood Road.  I said, of course I did.

A 'canter' to us meant hanging on the back of a brewers, or in the case of Holyrood Road, a chemical works drey.  The drivers used to chase us, of course, but this just made it more exciting.

Some of the drivers, in the interests of safety, would stop and let us climb aboard if they were empty, then drop us off at the top of the road just before the Pleasance crossing where we would cross the road and wait for our next canter down the way.

Cantering was also done on tram cars, where we would jump on the step as the car was leaving the stop and jump off whilst it was still moving to escape the wrath of the conductress or conductor."

Bob Henderson:  January 20, 2010




James Rafferty

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland

Here is a message that James Rafferty posted in the EdinPhoto guestbook:

Holyrood Road

Rolling the Barrels

"Can anyone out there help me with a memory that I have from around the mid-1950s?

I'm convinced that I used to see men rolling barrels from one side of the road to the other.  This was at the top of Holyrood Road where Aitchisons brewery was, just down from what used to be Page's Pub.

Can anyone else remember this?"

James Rafferty, Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland: 
Message posted in EdinPhoto guestbook: March 29, 2013




Margaret Williamson (née Hay)

Moline, Illinois, USA

Thank you to Margaret Williamson (née Hay), Moline, Illinois, USA for posting this message in the EdinPhoto web site.

Margaret wrote:

Holyrood Road

Rolling the Barrels

Leven Street and Holyrood

"Hi James:

I remember the men rolling barrels.  I lived above The Old Toll Bar in Leven Street.  The pub there had its beer delivery in  barrels, and would have to roll them through their pend.

They had a small building in the back, and would store the barrels there. I can almost still smell the beer, hops and yeast from that pub.

I also remember seeing barrels being rolled in Holyrood and other places.

Leaving Edinburgh

I was born in Edinburgh and came to US in 1960.  I've been back to Edinburgh a few times and am due another visit there.  My heart will always be there.

At least I had my younger years and 'teen years there, and have my memories.  Cheerio the noo!  I hope you get more replies"

Margaret Williamson (née Hay), Moline, Illinois, USA.  Reply posted in EdinPhoto guestbook  on March 29, 2013 in response to a message posted in the guestbook the same day by James Rafferty




James Hunter

Auckland, New Zealand

Thank you to Jim Hunter, Auckland, New Zealand, who wrote:

Holyrood Square

"I was born in Holyrood Square in 1938 and went to Milton House School.  My friends then were:



-  Hunter Palmers

My Mum's friends then were Lizzie Christianson and  Annie Walker, who  both lived in the square and the Weddles who lived in the stair next to us.

Next door were the Clarks and in the next stair was old Mr Prior.  I think the shop outside the pend was Annie Lawson's.

I moved to Craigmillar around 1945-56


"I'd like to hear more about my birthplace and the people who lived in Holyrood Square, and to see more photos of the square

James Hunter, Auckland, New Zealand:  26 October 2015 (2 emails)

Reply to James

If you have any information about or photos of Holyrood Square and would like to contact James Hutton, please email me to let me know and I'll pass on James' email address to you.

Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh:  27 October, 2015




Isobel Cameron (née Wood)


Thank you to Isobel Cameron, who wrote:

Our Home

 Holyrood Road

"I've just come across your site.  My, what memories!

I was born at  and lived in 70 Holyrood Road, from 1951 until 1963.  It was a five-storey tenement standing alone, opposite St Johns Street.

We lived on the top landing.  We had an outside toilet (shared by three families).  We all lived in a room and kitchen,  with a cold water tap.  We were poor but fairly happy."


Milton House

Jimmy Clark's

"I went to Milton House school and remember the teacher in the top class.

-  She was was Mrs Love.

Then I went to Jimmy Clark's school.  The only teachers that I remember there were:

Mr Grey, the Headmaster.

Harry Hampton.  (Anyone who went to jimmy's will remember him.)"

My Family

"I had two brothers and two sisters:

-  Andrew Wood,

-  Henry (Hena Wood),

-  Maureen Wood,

-  Rita Wood.

My mother and dad were Andrew and Peggy Wood "

Leaving Edinburgh
Return Visit

"I went to live in England for twenty-five years. 

On my return to Edinburgh, I  went for a wander down Holyrood Road, and when I saw that our building had been demolished, i sat on the church wall (opposite where our building used to be) and cried like a baby.  It was so sad to find it gone."


Isobel Cameron (née Wood), Edinburgh:  12 September 2016





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