Milton Bridge





Donald Grant

Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland


Donald Grant wrote:

Bush Loan

"I noticed that one of your visitors seems to have some information on Midlothian Police.

My wife was brought up in a cottage in Bush Loan*, Milton Bridge and the cottage apparently used to be either a Police house or Station.  (I'm not sure which.) There is credence to this claim, as I saw for  myself the steel door on what used to be the cell."

Donald mentioned that Bush Loan was between A701 and A702 from what is now the Bush Farm Inn through to a junction near Easter Howgate

Donald added:

Woodside Cottage

"The cottage when my wife and her family stayed there was called Woodside Cottage.  After they moved out, it was divided into two cottages.

I believe that when originally built it had been two cottages but a connecting passage was created at some time to make one dwelling from the two. As far as I know it dates back to the Eighteenth century and is a listed building.

Can anybody confirm the details above?  What else is known about the Bush Loan Police Station or Police House?"

Donald Grant:  Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland: April 22, 2008

Donald:  I've passed your question on to Edward McMillan who gave me some useful information about Police stations in Midlothian a couple of weeks ago.

Peter Stubbs:  April 26, 2008


Cottages at Milton Bridge

Woodside Cottage

Thank you to Donald Grant for sending me photographs of Woodside Cottage, taken in the 1980s and in 2008.  The cottage looks very similar in both photos.

Here is the photo taken in 2008:

Woodside Cottage at Milton Bridge ©

Donald Grant:  Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland: April 27, 2008






Donald Grant

Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland

Thank you to Edward McMillan who wrote:

Woodside and Fields-end

"Woodside was a county police station until 1936. I think the cottages were acquired by the police authority about the turn of the last century, but I have not  been able to ascertain the exact date.

In the early 1900's it had also been necessary to post a Penicuik officer to Fields-end where there was an influx of workers and families living in huts around a development there. Fields-end sub-station was only in existence for a short time."

Midlothian Police

At that time there were county constables stationed at Woodside, Silverburn and Milton Cottages. These were all existing buildings acquired by the police authority and adapted for use as single-man stations.

They were replaced in 1936 by three new purpose built police station/houses at Silverburn, Seafield (Bilston), and Glencorse."

Midlothian Constabulary General Order - 1936

"This order records


-  PC Hall from Woodside to Silverburn (New Station) on 23rd July 1936.

-  PC Bisset from Milton Cottages to Glencorse (New Station) on 23rd July 1936.

-  PC Vivers from Roslin to Seafield ( New Station) on 23rd July 1936."

Police Stations Closed

-  Woodside ceased to be a police station as from 23rd July 1936.

-  Milton Cottages ceased to be a police station as from 23rd July 1936."

Edward McMillan, Edinburgh:  May 1, 2008



Iain Dewar

Uphall, Midlothian, Scotland

Iain Dewar wrote:


"I grew up in Bilston.  Just down the road, the whole Bush Estate was our childhood playground. It was a much more pleasant and publicly accessible area of countryside than it is now.

Woodside Police Cottages

"I have great memories of those halcyon days (mid-1950s to early-1970s) and I can still remember the police sign hanging near the door of the cottage which we knew to have been a County Officers house.

It was just a stone's throw from Easter Howgate and, if memory serves well, it was two cottages at that timeI had a High School friend Ann Harris who lived there for many years."

Police Houses

"There was another more recent and bigger County Police House / Station situated where Seafield Road crosses the A703 at Lothian Burn, about a mile away, presumably the replacement for Woodside Cottage.

 I was very friendly with the family of PC Meldrum who lived and worked from there, he was a well respected officer and had boys my own age, the house had an office and cell that we played in when the boss was out!

There was another County Police House / Station in St Clair Crescent Roslin, it was newer still."

Police Bicycles

"Those were the days when the street lights were switched off at night and County Policemen only had bicycles to get about on! Radios, Panda cars and amalgamation put paid to all that."

Iain Dewar, Uphall, Midlothian, Scotland:  December 28, 2008



Iain Dewar

Uphall, Midlothian, Scotland

Iain Dewar added:


"My working career started at a Easter Bush Farm, just a short distance from Woodside Cottage.

The kids from Bilston, Damhead, Roslin, Easter Howgate, Bush, Woodside Lee, Auchendinny, Glencorse and Logan Lee, and all the other outlying areas had a certain affinity to each other. Probably because we were treated pretty much as outsiders when we went from our local primary schools to the high school at Penicuik.

We were small in number and often referred to as tcheuchters on account of our ruddy complexions or our parents' mostly land-based jobs as opposed to the Penicuik folks mostly associated with working in the paper mills.

It's a bit of a joke really, because before I left high school there were no mills left operating in Penicuik at all!"

Iain Dewar, Uphall, Midlothian, Scotland:  December 31, 2008



Allan Neil

Lancing, West Sussex, England

Iain Dewar wrote:

PC Bisset

"When I was a pupil at Glencorse School in the late-1940s, Geordie Bisset* was still the local PC. The Police House/Station was as described, up the hill from Milton Bridge.

I remember being dared by a boy named Joe Johnstone to sing 'Flat feet, bat feet' within PC Bisset's hearing and running like the wind down Graham Road when he turned to look at me!

*  PC Bissett is mentioned in the Reply to recollections 1 above.

Ten-Bob Note

"I also remember finding a ten-bob note and handing it in to the Police House, then getting an early Christmas when it was returned unclaimed three months later!

Milton Cottages

"I had not realised that there was a Police House at Milton Cottages up till 1936. My paternal great-grandmother, née Agnes Waugh was born there, in one of the cottages."




Donald Grant

Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland

About five years after posting his original message about the old Police House at Milton Bridge, Donald Grant read Iain Dewar's Recollections 2 above.

Donald replied:

Woodside Cottage

"Iain mentions that he had a friend at High School who lived in the Woodside Cottage, namely Anne Harris. Anne is actually my wife's older sister and she now lives in Haddington, East Lothian."

Two Cottages

"Iain also mentioned that he knew the building as two cottages, rather than one.  I'm not sure when my wife's parents moved in but they were certainly there in 1975 when I first appeared on the scene and had been for many years.

It was one cottage for the entire time they stayed there, so perhaps it was converted into one cottage for them to move into.  Despite its size there were only two bedrooms after the conversion into one cottage."

Donald Grant:  Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland:  March 23, 2012