The Edinburgh Reporter August 2021 issue

All the news about Edinburgh

All the news about Edinburgh

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Lift for bridge Cyclist death Summer highs Posh & Collects Seconds out

Red Wheel heritage award

for canal bridge

Page 5

Police investigate collision at

dangerous junction

Page 7

Day by day guide to

festival highlights

Page 12-14

Food writer Juliet visits new

Bonnie & Wild

Page 17

Boxer Robbie Graham

set for pro debut

Page 23

August 2021




Street performers

protest against

Fringe eviction


COMEDIAN Rory Bremner has

backed furious Edinburgh street

performers who have been turfed off

a High Street pitch they have made

their own.

Impressionist Bremner is less than

impressed by the decision by Edinburgh

Fringe who have declared the traditional

performing spot a no-fun zone, and have

moved buskers to other areas, including

West Parliament Square and The Mound.

The Borders-based funny man and

more than 150 other artists have signed

an open letter to The Festival Fringe

Society accusing organisers of a serious

humour failure. The group of Edinburghbased

performers claim Fringe bosses

are putting profits before

performance and offering spaces

which are unsuitable for their acts.

Comedy magician, Matt Von Trap,

said: “We are not going to be able to

perform anywhere on the High Street.

We understand that the Fringe are

trying to make everything Covid

secure, and they have made promises

that this will work for all performers,

but we are now at the point where

the community is quite desperate

because we don’t feel listened to.”

Full story on Page 8

Martin P McAdam

From left-to-right: Street performers Todd Various, Super Scott, Matt Von Trap and James James


CALA’s proposals for

South Queensferry

Coronavirus: The

latest statistics



puts on its Festival face, but as a result of the

continuing travel restrictions many of the

festivals which are going ahead are either

dependent on online contributions from

international artists, or physical input from

local acts.

Our front page features local street

performers who don’t see anything funny

about being pushed off their traditional

High Street patch where they have been

performing for years. Hopefully, Fringe

bosses will rethink and give the performers

something to smile about again.

Edinburgh is a beautiful city to get

around by bike, and as my favoured mode

of transport I have been fortunate to have

the use of an e-bike - funded by the

European Journalism Centre. Any hills in

Edinburgh can be safely ignored with the

little extra help that an electric motor gives

you as I go around taking photos, meeting

interviewees, recording some podcasts

while cycling and delivering copies of

this newspaper.


However, a young man wearing a grey and

black hoodie stole my beautiful steed from

outside my office one sunny afternoon. I

don’t expect to see it again. Yes, it was

insured, but the shock of such a theft does

not vanish overnight. Police Scotland have

launched a National Bike Theft Campaign

called Pedal Protect, highlighting a rise in

bike thefts all over Scotland with speciality

and electric bikes being stolen to fund

organised crime. In one month more than

4,900 bikes were stolen in Scotland which is

an 18% rise on last year.

There are hundreds of bikes at Fettes HQ

which are unclaimed, so if you do own a

bike take a note of the serial number and

get a lock and alarm. There is some advice

on Page 4.

I hope that you and your families are well

and that you enjoy our monthly look at the

news in Edinburgh.

Phyllis Stephen, Editor

Planning news

PLANNING PERMISSION in principle has now been granted by

The City of Edinburgh Council for a major mixed-use development

at South Queensferry which will enlarge the royal burgh to the south.

CALA Homes (East) will build 980 homes, a new primary school,

as well as creating provision for a care home, foodstore, drivethrough

restaurants and petrol station, on the 44 hectare site south

west of Builyeon Road on the southern edge of Queensferry.

The developers say the designs have been heavily directed by

engagement from the local community, spearheaded by the

Queensferry & District Community Council and include suggestions

from a well-attended online consultation event last October.

The developers have signed a Section 75 Agreement with the

council which contains obligations to be fulfulled by them, including

a contribution of £90,000 towards cycle paths.

The approval is conditional upon a new Masterplan, and the

CALA submission provides the additional details required for full

planning approval.


CALA HAVE also lodged an application for redevelopment of St

Crispin’s School, Blackford (after its move to Burdiehouse).


PLANS HAVE been lodged with the council to redevelop the

HMRC site at Grayfield House on Bankhead Avenue in Sighthill as

a 13,631 square metre industrial park comprising 18 units.





THE NUMBER of people who

have received both doses of

Covid-19 vaccine is now more

than three million, while four

million people have received their

first dose.

The number of positive cases of

Covid-19 since the beginning of

the pandemic is around 350,000

and the number of deaths from

Covid-19 according to National

Records of Scotland is 10,300.

On 1 April case numbers in

Lothian were 73 but rose to 999 on

1 July - the date when national

figures exceeded 4,000 cases.

The World Health Organisation

(WHO) uses test positivity to

assess whether a country has the

virus under control or not. Where

this is high it suggests

transmission is also high, or that

more testing is necessary.

The WHO offered a rule of

thumb guide saying that where

test positivity is under 5% for two

weeks, it could be a trigger to

allow restrictions to ease.

The test positivity rate has been

over 5% in Scotland since 19 June

when it dropped to 4.5%.

For advertising and

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reporter.co.uk Donate anchor.fm YouTube

According to Professor David

Dowdy and Professor Gypsyamber

D’Souza of Johns Hopkins

Bloomberg School of Public

Health: “While tracking the

number of positive tests is useful,

what matters more is the total

number of people who are

infected, and we can only know

this number by testing more

people. As more people are tested,

the percent positive will go down.”

The Scottish Government has

made testing easier to access with

drop-in clinics, but you can also

ask for free lateral flow tests to be

sent to you by post, even if you

have no symptoms. Each pack has

seven rapid lateral flow device

tests which provide results in

30 minutes.




distributed through a network

of city businesses such as

supermarkets and the EICC

which is being used as a mass

vaccination centre.

The paper is also distributed

at Leith and Stockbridge

Markets on the first weekend

of any month.

If you have had your car in

any branch of Farmer Autocare

for some TLC then you may

have received a free copy of

our latest paper there.

Please subscribe if you can

to ensure that you have your

copy delivered to you by post

each month. It helps us to cover

the overheads of bringing the

news to you in print and online.

And if you have any suggestions

as to places where the paper

might be dropped off then

please let us know.


About us...

We write about news relating to the Edinburgh area. If you

have any news, or if you would like to submit an article or

photograph for publication then please contact us

Editor: Phyllis Stephen

Designer: Felipe Perez

Photos: Martin P McAdam





07791 406 498



Martin P McAdam

Plans for a greener

Western Harbour

The Tiffany


Look up - always

look up

New AV


St Cuthbert’s new look

Historic church has undergone a £150,000 transformation

THE PARISH CHURCH of St Cuthbert has

undergone a major transformation.

Many pews were removed from the

sanctuary at the church to create a more

flexible, multi-purpose space.

Pews have been replaced with free standing

chairs, a new floor has been laid and a

state-of-the-art audio-visual system,

including large screens discreetly located

under the gallery, has been fitted.

A new wet room with shower and toilet

has been installed and a bronze statue of

“Bum” the dog, gifted to Edinburgh by the

US city of San Diego in 2008 to mark a

twinning partnership, has been relocated to

the churchyard.

St Cuthbert’s on Lothian Road is

already home to the Scottish Sinfonia

and Edinburgh Bach Choir as well as

being a major Fringe venue. It also

enjoys links to crime writer Agatha

Christie and Hollywood

actress Kim Cattrall, of

Sex and The City fame.

Minister, Rev Peter

Sutton, said the



Peter Sutton

would enable it to host more large

community events and conferences.

He said: “St Cuthbert’s is the oldest

Christian site in Edinburgh and we are

absolutely delighted with the seamless


“It still very much feels like you are

entering a church, which is very important

for us.

“Maintaining four pews at the back of the

sanctuary under the gallery helps frame the

new Second World War Memorial Chapel

that we have created at the back of the church.

“Most importantly, the refurbishment

allows us, with our partners, Steps to

Hope, to serve our new Sunday

evening congregation of 100

homeless folk and volunteers in

the main sanctuary, so they too

can enjoy the awe and wonder of

this stunning sacred space.

“The wet room will really

benefit our guests, and it

seems appropriate that

“Bum” the homeless

companion dog from

San Diego has been

Painting by Adrian

Wiszniewski can be seen

at St Cuthbert’s

relocated to our kirkyard.”

Agatha Christie married her second

husband, Max Mallowan, in the church’s

Memorial Chapel in 1930. In another link to

celebrity, each year a candle is lit in memory

of Christopher Cattrall, the late brother of the

British/Canadian actress.

Ms Cattrall, who starred in a production of

“The Witness for the Prosecution” which is

based on an Agatha Christie short story,

visited the church with her partner Russell

Thomas in early 2018 during a trip to see

friends in Edinburgh, not long after her

brother died.

Cattrall lives on Vancouver Island in

Canada, and closely follows the activities at St

Cuthbert’s on social media.

Mr Sutton said the building, which has a

Tiffany of New York stained glass window

depicting David about to do battle with

Goliath, is one of the best medium-sized

concert venues in Edinburgh.

He revealed that it will host a community

arts exhibition around the theme of

sustainability in October in anticipation of

the COP26 UN climate change conference

being held in Glasgow in November.

FORTH PORTS has changed plans for a

proposed housing development at Western

Harbour, claiming it will make the scheme

become greener.

The new plans will include a Go Green Hub,

an education centre and a reduction in the

number of parking spaces. The car parking was

to be provided on carbon intensive parking

decks but these would now give way to

landscaped areas, saving an estimated 4,555

tonnes of CO 2 .

The developer wants to ensure that this

development will help residents reduce car

usage and their carbon footprint while assisting

the council in its net zero carbon goal.

The amended outline planning application

for the 2,000 home development aims to drive

green energy adoption and reduce carbon

emissions. The plans in place were approved in

June 2020, but Forth Ports no longer believe

they are wide enough to achieve its own, or the

council’s, goals to reduce carbon emissions. In

addition to the housing there is a 4.4 hectare

park and a new 540 pupil primary school and

nursery which will open later this year.

Charles Hammond, Chief Executive Officer of

Forth Ports Group, said: “It’s becoming clearer

by the day that not only do we have a

responsibility to reduce carbon emissions but

that there is a real appetite for this change too.

At Forth Ports, we are committed to supporting

this, not only through our major industrial

projects such as the creation of a £40 million

renewable energy hub within the Port of Leith,

but also through housing development projects

such as Western Harbour.

“We want to continue the regeneration of

Leith, but we believe that it needs to be done in

a way that supports the move to net zero

carbon. This is truly a transition, and we are

confident that the steps we are proposing for

Western Harbour will support the kind of

behavioural change needed for Scotland to

achieve its net zero aspirations.

“Forth Ports is proud of our role in helping

create a much more vibrant and successful

community and we are determined to do that in

a way that is sustainable. These new homes for

families will create a fantastic place to live in

Leith beside one of the finest, and biggest, new

parks in Scotland and, of course, our fantastic



Wheely chuffed

New Civic Centre

at Muirhouse

National Transport Trust awards Red Wheel to canal bridge at Leamington

Lesley Hinds


The Edinburgh Reporter

THE LEAMINGTON Lift Bridge on the Union

Canal has been given a new award by The

National Transport Trust (NTT). There is a new

Red Wheel plaque on the gate adjacent to the

bridge denoting the site as one of importance to

transport heritage.

John Cameron CBE, a former Chairman of

ScotRail, did the honours on Wednesday and in

a short speech before an assembled audience, he

explained the history of the bridge, after which

Scottish Canals staff demonstrated that the

bridge is still able to rise and fall to

accommodate canal traffic.

The Union Canal opened in 1822 linking the

Forth & Clyde Canal with basins in Edinburgh

at Port Hamilton and Port Hopetoun in

Tollcross, mainly to bring mineral traffic into


Left: John Cameron, CBE,

former Chairman of

Scotrail, performed the


Top: The Leamington

Lift Bridge

Bottom: Transport

enthusiasts welcome the

new Red Wheel award

The bridge was put in its current position in

1922 replacing a drawbridge linking Gilmore

Park and Leamington Road. It is constructed

from a wooden deck that can be raised between

two gantries giving clearance of 9 feet below. It is

not open to cars and only serves those on foot,

in wheelchairs or on bikes.

The permanent lattice girder footbridge allows

pedestrians to cross even when the deck is raised

- and it can be raised by anyone who has been

appropriately trained by Scottish Canals.

The Red Wheel is inscribed: “Leamington Lift

Bridge Erected over the Union Canal at

Fountainbridge in 1906. Relocated here in 1923

when the canal was cut back from Port

Hopetoun to the Lochrin Basin.”

In a spate of modernisation it was the railways

that spelled the end of the canal’s most useful life

taking passengers on the new Edinburgh &

Glasgow Railway. The canal was formally closed

in 1965 until the Millennium Link led to its

reopening as a route for pleasure craft and

towpath users in central Scotland, linked by the

innovative Falkirk Wheel.

The bridge was restored to full working order

in 2002.

The bridge was again refurbished in 2019

following a significant contribution from

Sustrans to ensure it remains an important part

of the National Cycle Network due to their

ongoing partnership with Scottish Canals. It

provides a vital connection to people walking

wheeling and cycling including to and from the

new Boroughmuir High School.

Mr Cameron said: “This really is a red letter

day for Red Wheel in Scotland because this is

the first red wheel awarded to Scottish Canals. It

was the railways which took away much of the

traffic and the canal eventually closed until the

restoration during the Millennium Link project.

“The original lifting bridge was provided by

the North British Railway in 1906 and relocated

to its present position here in 1922.

“The bridge is the width of a single canal boat

and the only structure hydraulically operated on

the canal.

“A report issued in 2000 almost brought the

bridge to an end by suggesting that it would be

maintained in the open position, but fortunately

a decision from higher up led to it being fully


PLANS HAVE now been lodged for the

new multi million pound civic centre in

North Edinburgh as part of The City of

Edinburgh’s regeneration programme for

the area.

Former councillor and Lord Provost,

Lesley Hinds, is Chair of North Edinburgh

Arts (NEA) which is partnering with the

council in delivering the scheme.

One side of Macmillan Square is a rather

tired looking parade of shops which is

about to be demolished. On the other side

there are brand new homes being

constructed with shops underneath. The

library is on another side, but will be

moved along with the NEA building into

newly constructed spaces. The café will be

brought to the front of the NEA building

where it will have more prominence. A

skills and learning centre will be

introduced into the library to showcase

potential jobs to school children and

people in the area.

The square is named after community

activist, Maureen Macmillan, a stalwart of

the community marching through the

area highlighting anti-racism and making

a difference to the community she lived in.

In years to come the square will be the

heart of the community with services and

housing in the same place.

Lesley said: “Hopefully it is not going to

be somewhere that just closes down at

night becoming a dead area. That is how

town centres work in my opinion. You

have to have a mix of choices.”

North Edinburgh Arts is a newish

building but it could have become

land-locked with all the development

going on around it. A community land

transfer means that the community own

the property which will be developed as

soon as permission is granted. Work on

the community land transfer has taken

around three years so far.

Funding may come from The Scottish

Government Regeneration Fund and the

UK Government’s Levelling up Fund.

The planning application lodged with

The City of Edinburgh Council is yet to be

approved, but it includes details of

architect Richard Murphy’s design for the

fourth phase of the Pennywell Muirhouse

Civic Centre. So far Lesley said that there

have been no objections. The mixed use

development will have a nursery, library

and skills hub, arts centre, flats,

landscaping, access and parking.

Listen to our podcast recorded during a

walk with Lesley Hinds on anchor.fm


Live Edinburgh News

Travel sector

needs boost




Martin P McAdam




It’s a whirlwind!

MSP Foysol Choudhury on his key moments after being elected

MY FIRST DAYS as an MSP involved attending

training events, familiarising myself with the

workings of the Scottish Parliament and visiting

the Scottish Parliament building. All a bit

strange as very few people to speak to! So much

learning to do with so little time.


Standing up and the swearing in was a highlight

as it then became real I was now an MSP. I

recognise the privilege of being the first

Bangladeshi MSP.


One of the jobs of an MSP is to support

campaigns you and your constituents feel

strongly about. I was delighted to speak at Black

Lives Matter and Climate Change Rallies. Two

issues close to my heart.


Making your maiden speech is important but

stressful in the first session of The Scottish

Parliament. You only have a few minutes and

you want to ensure you get your priorities right

for the allocated time. Got through it unscathed

and was pleased by the positive response from

everyone. A few quotes from my speech: “I have

been advocating for equality and justice, my

entire adult life. Not just for people from

minority ethnic communities, but for people

disadvantaged economically. In contrast to some

other cities and other countries, Edinburgh is a

rich city in a rich country. However, some of our

people are forced to live in inadequate housing,

suffer from the injustice of poverty and the

qualities of their lives are reduced as a result. It’s

a shameful truth that people in the most

deprived areas of the city often die years before

others who live in more affluent areas.”


As an MSP you have an opportunity to put

questions to the First Minister. Covid-19 has to

be a priority in Scotland, and two of my

questions were on this issue. Firstly how to

increase vaccine rates in communities with a low

take up. Secondly on ventilation in premises

following the relaxation of Covid-19 rules. First

Minister agreed both questions were important

questions to be asked.

I have submitted motions on Parks for All,

congratulating Networking Key Services

exhibition and Professor Sir Geoff Palmer on

becoming the new Chancellor of Heriot-Watt


Listening to constituents and organisations as

an MSP allows me to submit questions to

Ministers on issues that need answers and

action. A flavour of the questions I have asked

range from Best Start Food Programme,

Pancreatic Cancer therapy, jet skiers in Wardie

Bay and road traffic in South Queensferry!


The sheer number and variety of emails have

surprised me and it is a challenging job to

respond to them all. Especially lobbying emails

which can run into hundreds on one issue.



During recess I have responded to the many

requests for meetings and visits from

community groups, third sector organisations

and lobby groups. I have found the meetings and

visits inspiring and informative in my work as a

Lothian representative in the Parliament.


I was pleased to be appointed a member of the

Social Justice and Social Security Committee, if

a bit shocked when I was asked to Chair the first

meeting as the oldest member of the committee!


I was delighted to have been appointed by Anas

Sarwar, Leader of Scottish Labour, as shadow

minister for Culture, Europe and International


WE’RE ALL STILL getting used to this

limbo we find ourselves in.

We need some long term thinking and

effective communication from the Scottish

Government especially with regards to air

travel. I have spoken to aviation and

transport bosses and they feel completely

left out of the decision making process.

Communication on this has to get better.

Our travel and airline sector need to know

the plan and need a four-week lead-in

time in order to get that plan in place.

The sector has had a completely

debilitating year and a half and they need

flexibility in order to get back on their feet.

Like all airports, Edinburgh’s acts as a hub

for the city. Edinburgh especially relies on

its airport for the many tourists and

international visitors we receive.

Post-pandemic we will be competing

with other airports in the UK and indeed

across the whole world and we need the

government to do right by the sector.

There is still no plan in place for vaccine

passports in Scotland and if it is to be

based around another app then there

needs to be far more support and

oversight on this.

It will take time to build back confidence

in the travel sector. There are surely ways

of doing this safely as has been seen in

other countries. Robust testing practices

can be put in place which allow our

carriers to operate.

There is too much short termism from

the government and a lack of joined up

thinking. I am relieved that we don't see

reckless wholesale dropping of

restrictions in Scotland but the problem

here is that rules have become so

complicated and difficult to follow that

they are being abandoned by many. The

regulations are incoherent and need a

major overhaul. We need a return to

normality with simpler rules while

keeping businesses in the loop.

Daniel Johnson MSP


Tracking progress

Leith Walk track installation

Ocean Terminal

landscaping works

Zooming in on Trams to Newhaven extension work


progress of the Trams to Newhaven project,

which at this point is behind schedule by

13 weeks.

Tram tracks are now laid at various locations

on the 4.7 kms (2.91 miles) two-way extension

to the line from York Place. The new section

of the tram line is expected to be open by

Spring 2023.

The final design includes improvements

for pedestrians and cyclists all the way

along the route.

The tram team advise of individual street

closures and diversions as they happen. The

latest is that Tower Street footpath will be

Petition to Keep South Queensferry Liveable


objections, Ambassador Homes are

to build a new road into the royal

burgh of South Queensferry, felling

mature trees and routing traffic

along National Cycle Routes 1 and

76 towards local primary and

secondary schools. A petition by

residents claims the council is

ignoring research into high levels

of traffic..

The petition states: “KEEP


demand safe walking, wheeling

and cycling conditions by not

encouraging more driving into the

town. Keep existing low traffic

neighbourhoods and no new roads

for motor vehicles. We request

more active travel routes and

opportunities for active travel

while vehicle access is maintained

closed for about two weeks from 26 July and

diversion signs will be in place.

The original plan was to run the tram on

lines 1, 2 and 3, but funding was not made

available for all phases when the original tram

project was agreed.

What the city ended up with was half the

line at twice the cost, something which the

Edinburgh Tram Inquiry chaired by former

Lord Advocate, Lord Hardie, QC, will report

on at a future date. The original project cost of

£375 million has spiralled to around £1 billion,

while the cost of the inquiry is estimate at

£12 million.

Line 1 originally included 22 stops and was

on existing roads only.”

The existing road at Ferrymuir

Gait was previously the access to

a motel demolished after closing

in 2004.

Transport Scotland (TS) have

administration offices at the Forth

Road Bridge, but TS has, according

Ambassador Homes,

Ferrymuir Gait site

to petitioners, said they will not

allow use of the access road (which

links directly to the roundabout on

the A904) except for emergency

vehicles. The Queensferry and

District Community Council also

objected to the 2014 planning

application, but permission was

to be a circular route to Granton waterfront

which cut back across town using the disused

railway to Haymarket.

With 4,000 homes proposed for the

Waterfront it may be a development the

council will return to in years to come.

If the proposed line 3 to Newcraighall had

been approved, it would have been difficult to

justify spending £120 million on the Sheriffhall

roundabout, as provided for by the Edinburgh

and South East Scotland City Region Deal.

Campaigners hope that when the threat of

the pandemic is past, politicians may consider

those earlier proposals more seriously in light

of the climate emergency.

granted for the 124 home

development, with vehicles routed

away from a possible direct access

to the trunk road network.

Cllr Norman Work said: “I have

every sympathy with the residents

who wanted access via Ferrymuir

Gait. I agree with them and made

presentations at the time but

unfortunately despite the

objections Planning was approved

in 2015 for access via the other

roads through the estate.”

MSP Foysol Choudhury visited

the site. He said: “I fully support the

residents. The proposed vehicle

route goes through a residential

area which has low emissions and a

National Cycle Route. Ministers

must intervene. TS with their

cavalier attitude are not complying

with Scottish Government policies.”

Flagging up

literary giants

THE SALTIRE Society have put out a call

today for nominations for this year's

Scottish Lifetime Achievement Award. This

is given to people who make a lasting

impact on the literary culture in Scotland.

To be eligible, nominees have to be born in

Scotland, currently living here or working in

or for Scotland.

Sarah Mason, Director of the Saltire

Society, said: “The Scottish Lifetime

Achievement Award celebrates an

individual who has made a meaningful

creative contribution to the world of

literature, be it in writing, publishing,

representing authors or working in

supporting emerging writers. Individuals

are nominated for their professional and

personal endeavours and accomplishments.

Anyone can make a nomination and we are

very much looking forward to an exciting

list of names to put forward to our judging

panel in September.”

Members of the public can make a

nomination through the Saltire Society

website. Nominations close on 26 August.

Is bin hub plan a

load of rubbish?

THE NEW TOWN and Broughton

Community Council have been flyering

residents in the area asking them to

support the campaign against

introducing communal bin hubs. The

campaigners say that they believe The

Edinburgh World Heritage site will be

permanently damaged by plans to take

away gull proof bags and replace them

with bin hubs every 50 metres.

The campaigners also say that the bin

hubs will attract fly-tipping, encourage

poor recycling habits and take up scarce

parking spaces.

The council on the other hand say that

this will be an improvement to waste

services as no-one will have to walk more

than 50 metres to deposit their rubbish,

and it will “enhance streetscape and

improve the public realm”.

If you live in the area and want to support

the campaign then find out how to do that

on the NTBCC website: www.ntbcc.org.uk


Sara Thomson,

Founder, The Leith


Cycle probe

Police investigators examine death

scene at controversial junction

Police stage collision

re-enactment at Portobello

One Step


Hunt is on for climate ambassadors

AHEAD OF THE UN Climate Change

Conference COP26 in Glasgow, 13

ambassadors have been chosen to

encourage the UK to follow in their green

footsteps and help the country tackle

climate change.

Now the search for another 13

everyday climate leaders is underway.

Sara Thomson, Founder of The Leith

Collective is one of the first ambassadors.

Sara founded The Leith Collective in 2019,

providing a platform for 130 artists

brought together by a common aim to

repurpose items that may otherwise have

been destined for landfill. The Leith

Collective became the UK’s first single-use

plastic free shop of its kind and was later

crowned runner up in the Surfers Against

Sewage Plastic Free Awards. People can

nominate anyone in their community

who is making a difference in the fight

against climate change.

Nominees will have the chance to

become “One Step Greener Ambassadors

and showcase their stories at COP26.

Those nominated could be family

members, friends, colleagues, community

leaders or entrepreneurs: anyone who is

taking action to tackle climate change

and inspiring others.

"One Step Greener" Ambassadors will

come from all walks of life in their pursuit

of a greener future, as they come together

with government, businesses, community

groups, schools and citizens in taking

steps to tackle climate change.




ROAD ACCIDENT investigators have

staged a re-enactment of the tragic

incident which claimed the life of

cyclist Heather Stronach at a notorious

Portobello junction.

Heather, 36, died when her bike was

involved in a collision with a lorry on

Portobello High Street last November.

Inquiries into the fatal collision are

continuing, and Police Scotland’s Collision

Investigation Unit recently carried out a

detailed study of the surrounding area and

the accident hotspot at the junction of Sir

Harry Lauder Road.

A lorry similar to the one involved in the

accident, owned by Grant Construction, was

transported to the scene on a low-loader

vehicle and was filmed and photographed at

the busy junction.

In March 2019, father-to-be Stuart Elliott,

died at the same intersection when his bike

was involved in a collision with an HGV

tipper truck. Stuart, 40, had been cycling to

work but received catastrophic injuries when

he was knocked from his bike and died at the

scene. HGV driver John Crowe stood trial

accused of causing death by careless driving,

but following a five day trial at Edinburgh

Sheriff Court a jury found him not guilty.

Campaign group Spokes Porty described

the junction as “the most dangerous in the

city” for cyclists and said action to make it

safer must be urgently prioritised.

Spokesperson Kirsty Lewin said:

“Spokes Porty was devastated by the deaths

of Stuart Elliott and Heather Stronach - both

travelling on their bikes in Portobello.

We are dismayed and frustrated that

significant safety measures for cyclists are yet

to be implemented at the Portobello High

Street junction with Sir Harry Lauder Road

Heather Stronach

where the collisions happened.”

Spokes Porty called for the complete

redesign of the junction which should fully

segregate cyclists from vehicles and said that

design, planning and budget work should

start now.

Kirsty Lewin added: “This dangerous

situation is exacerbated by Portobello

becoming an increasingly popular visitor

destination, with the Prom often too busy

with pedestrians to cycle on, and heavy

through traffic on Portobello High Street.

Many people cycle through Portobello,

and many more would if they felt safe and


Police Scotland confirmed they had carried

out a reconstruction of the incident and said

they continue to appeal for anyone with

information to contact them on 101, quoting

incident number 1829 of 2 November 2020.

No one has been charged in connection with

Heather’s death and the incident is subject to

a report to the Procurator Fiscal.


Todd Various performing

on the High Street

Martin P McAdam

High Street low for

street performers


EDINBURGH’S street performers are the face of the Fringe but

have been left out in the cold after being evicted from their usual

high profile spots.

The artists traditionally use a pitch outside the Festival Fringe

Society’s (FFS) Royal Mile office, per-forming juggling and magic

acts to a circular audience.

But as a down-sized Fringe kicks into life, artists have been told

they can’t perform there and Fringe bosses plan to locate an

information office on the site. FFS say the measures are Covidrelated

to en-sure audience safety and will only be in place during

the 2021 festival

Now more than 150 artists and performers, including

impersonator Rory Bremner, have written to FFS pushing back

against the plans and asking for a bigger say in the planning and

management of perfor-mance spaces.

Comedy magician Matt von Trap said: “We feel that the

consultation was a pretence and Fringe bosses have brought in

private events company, Unique, to run what was a public festival.

“We all love the Fringe and their core values of openness and

open access but they have allowed the space to be taken over by

Johnnie Walker to put a bar in place with an arena for Covid

security. I and many others won’t be able to perform at the Mound

space because it’s too small for us, and I don’t see how replacing

street entertainment with street drinking is safer than having

street performers.”

Dave Southern, who first performed on the Mound in 1988, said:

“It seems street drinking is more important to the Fringe Society

than street performance this year. Having a bar as part of an open

air family performance space is like having a drive-thru restaurant

on stage with the ballet!”

Shona McCarthy, FFS Chief Executive, said: “The iconic Fringe

Street Events is part of what makes this festival so special, and

we’ve done everything we can with partners across the city to

enable it to take place in some form. These measures are in place

to support public safety and allow audiences to enjoy what our

world class street performers have to offer, and are only in place

for 2021 in line with re-quired Covid mitigation. We look forward

to the full return of Fringe Street Events in 2022 on the High Street

and Mound.”


Governor ties the Knott

Keeper of Edinburgh Castle weds

partner in historic ceremony

Vikki Bruce


THE GOVERNOR of Edinburgh Castle, Major

General Alastair Bruce of Crionaich, OBE, has

married his partner of 20 years, Stephen Knott.

The wedding ceremony at St John’s Church was

officiated by the Bishop of Edinburgh assisted by

the Reverend Neil Gardner, Minister of

Canongate Kirk and the Rev Markus Dunzkofer,

Rector of St John’s Church.

The General wore his fabulously feathered hat

and frock coat, which was adorned by his various

medals, and the couple’s combined standard flew

high over the Princes Street church following the

wedding. Bruce has revived the old full military

dress, with a bicorn hat covered in swan feathers

over red.

The wedding was delayed twice from last year

and was scaled back to just 24 people including

those officiating, with Major General Bruce

resisting any attempts to call it a society wedding.

He said: “We certainly felt that we had the

society we wanted, and that we were entirely

embraced by Edinburgh, and by the city and

the castle.”

He explained that trying to set a date has been

“rather like trying to catch a butterfly with a net”,

but that it was his fervent wish to marry Stephen

in Edinburgh after his installation as governor,

and that they would have this photograph of the

two of them standing proudly side by side.

Major General Bruce is a reservist, having

served in the Scots Guards during the Falklands

War, but now works with Sky, and is a historical

adviser on films and TV programmes such as The

King’s Speech and Downton Abbey.

The couple will begin their married life living

as much of the time as possible at the Governor’s

apartment at Edinburgh Castle, although Mr

Knott works as Deputy Chief of Staff for the

Archbishop of Canterbury, meaning that he also

spends time at Lambeth Palace.

Bruce admitted that when he joined the army it

was a very different landscape as far as same sex

relationships went.

He is now the highest ranking British Army

Officer to have entered into a same sex marriage.

He said: “I’m so happy. Being married was

beyond my ken as a young soldier.

“I had to lie to survive because homosexuality,

from when I joined in 1979 up until 2000, was

cause for instant dismissal, with Dishonourable


“The speed of change in the Army has been

overwhelming. I knew it was permitted to be gay

in the Army but the fact that something changes

suddenly after a lifetime - well after 22 years

being in the army without it being legal - it is

difficult to immediately embrace legality and

be free and say “here I am” - and I didn’t, not

for years.

“I had been brought up in a particular way

where you were expected to be heterosexual. I

had found myself in the army where it was now

accepted, but I was not feeling particularly strong

about suddenly coming out.

“My parents didn’t know, my family and

friends didn’t know so it was not until I had been

with Stephen for some time that I decided I could

take on the coming out business. I wasn’t very

courageous about it really, but I had lived for so

long quietly and presumed I would continue to

do so. But there has been an exponential change

in society.

“It’s been also impressive that The Episcopal

Church of Scotland made that step too, and when

I spoke to the Bishop of Edinburgh who married

us, and said how grateful we were to the

Episcopal Church of Scotland for marrying same

sex couples, he said we don’t - I was slightly


“He said we don’t - we marry people. I thought

that was the loveliest thing that anybody had said.

“Quite apart from the joy I have in Stephen, I

have been hugely fortunate to be appointed

Governor of Edinburgh Castle for a five year

term. I really want to try and bring the role more

into the ownership of the Scottish people.

“Of the four nations in the UK, Scotland’s

history is the one most intertwined with its

martial narrative, which is why being guardian

of the fortress means you have to reach into

every young Scot’s imagination and say, ‘this is

about you’.”

Mr Stephen Knott, left, and

Major General Alastair Bruce

after their wedding

James McGinley, right,

with friend Corentin


James nets Meadows ping pong table

THANKS TO some hard batting by local

resident James McGinley, a new table

tennis table is now installed at the east

end of The Meadows for everyone

to enjoy.

James (25), a product design engineer,

told The Edinburgh Reporter: "I am an avid

sports player, but during the pandemic it

was hard to keep active and see friends.

Table tennis is quite accessible to

everyone and it is quite sociable too.

"My friends and I played at a few

outdoor tables around the city in recent

months. I joked about having one on The

Meadows, and then began to wonder why

it wasn't happening.

"I contacted Friends of Meadows and

Bruntsfield Links (FOMBL), and spoke with

them. We had many discussions about

location and when that was signed off by

FOMBL, it was a case of getting the money

together from the council and FOMBL.”

Jim Orr, Chair of FOMBL said: "The

signs are that the new table tennis is a

huge success.

“It's been in constant use since it

was installed.

“We're very grateful to the council for

supporting us with the funding and

would strongly recommend such a project

to other parks groups in the city too. We're

already looking at fundraising for a

second one."


MICHAEL GASCOIGNE was an outstanding Edinburgh lawyer who

was reputed to have disciplined former prime minister, Tony Blair.

When Michael was three, his mother was taken into hospital near

Inverness suffering from acute post-natal depression. The condition was

little understood in the early 1950s, and certainly not as treatable as

today, for she died in that same hospital six years later as a result. He was

brought up instead by his paternal grandmother at Foulis Castle, north

of the Black Isle, and those early years spent in relative loneliness in the

Highlands were to shape the rest of his life.

At 13, he was awarded a scholarship to Fettes College, where he

excelled in all aspects of school life. Studious and inquisitive by

inclination, popular with his peers and teachers, and with a good eye for

a ball, he took advantage of the many extra-mural activities that Fettes

offered. His claim to fame during this period was being obliged to

discipline his "fag" Tony Blair, but Michael never revealed the nature of

the latter’s misdemeanour, nor the punishment. He secured a conditional

place at Cambridge but, due to an administrative error, he went on to

read law at the University of Aberdeen.

In 1971 he was appointed as an articled clerk to Brodies WS in

Edinburgh – one of Scotland’s foremost law firms. On arrival, the senior

partner advised him that it would benefit him to apply for membership

of two august bodies: The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers

(Muirfield) and The New Club. With characteristic obstinacy he applied

to neither. Instead, he took up trackside marshalling with the

Scottish Motorsport Marshals’ Club – an

unusual pastime, but one to which he devoted

many years and hours of administrative as well

as practical work. It gave him enormous

pleasure to be made President of the club in

2020. He vowed never to play golf, and kept

true to his word throughout his life.

At only 24 he was the youngest person ever

to be made a partner by Brodies. A sound

technician, he developed a full knowledge of

the law with an acquisitive interest in all

aspects that affected the countryside. He

became a specialist in agricultural law where

his expertise and encyclopedic knowledge were

regarded throughout his profession as second

to none. Perhaps best described as a lawyer’s

lawyer, he was a pastmaster at finding clever,

but sensible, solutions to the knottiest legal

problems and tracing a way through the maze

of a complicated property transaction. He was

renowned for his diligence and his deft care for

clients who ranged from crofters to many of

Scotland’s wealthiest and most influential



Solicitor and Writer to the Signet

Born: 1 February 1949 • Died: 11 June 2021

landowners, all of whom he treated with the same loyalty, humility and

respect. Remuneration from his cases was of no importance to him: the

only thing that mattered was what was right.

By the mid-1990s his name appeared third on the list of partners at

Brodies, and he had become a key member of the Rural Affairs

Committee of the Law Society. The course seemed set for him to become

senior partner. But notwithstanding his prodigious contribution to the

firm, he did not embrace the commercial imperative which had swept

through legal practices in the 1980s and 1990s. His love of the law and

his tenacious dedication to his clients were not matched by a willingness

to issue the increasingly hefty invoices, which were anathema to him.

The consequence was inevitable, and after many warnings, his services at

Brodies were dispensed with.

After Brodies, he joined Gillespie Macandrew, first as a partner and

latterly as a consultant. Consultancy suited his talents, enabling him to

avoid any involvement with the day-to-day housekeeping of the business.

Kind and understanding by nature, he devoted himself to mentoring

young lawyers and passing on his deep knowledge, particularly of

agricultural law. He taught in parables, giving of his time generously. But

he was never one to embrace the advantages that technology might offer,

and only several years after the use of mobile telephones had become

commonplace did he reluctantly accept one. He almost took it as a

personal affront if someone sent him an email, and the reply could be

guaranteed to be terse. "Can’t type" was his excuse when challenged.

Foulis Castle, his childhood home, is the ancestral seat of the chiefs

of the Clan Munro. When he came of age, his uncle Pat Munro, then

chief, persuaded Michael to join the Council of the Clan Munro

Association. He served continuously for over 40 years and proved

himself invaluable both in giving wise general advice and on all matters

legal. This included completely rewriting the Council’s constitution,

setting up the Clan Munro Heritage Museum Trust and delivering a

£1.3m development at the Storehouse of Foulis on the shore of the

Cromarty Firth.

Michael devoted much of his leisure time to other pursuits, four

notably connected with motorsport. In addition to his role in the

Scottish Motorsport Marshals’ Club, he was a key figure in the Scottish

Motor Racing Club and a senior official on the RAC Rally. At the time of

his death he was Chairman of the Royal Scottish Automobile Club,

where he had been a member since 1971, and chairman since 1998. It

was, as he once put it, "hard work and good fun in equal measure".

He was a first-class rifle shot, which combined with his keen interest

in deer to make him a very proficient stalker. Such was his

marksmanship that it was only with difficulty that a longstanding

client, friend and stalking host managed to persuade him, after many

years, to stop using open sights on the hill and to convert to a

telescopic sight.

He had three children from his first

marriage to Anna Milne: Jamie, himself a

father of two, is an ecological process designer,

Gemma works for VisitScotland and Peter who

is the strength and conditioning coach for the

Great Britain Cycling Team.

Two years after the birth of Peter the

marriage was dissolved, and in 2000 he


He retired from legal practice in 2016 and,

cruelly, a year later Alzheimer’s was diagnosed.

With unfailing support from his second wife,

Linda, he battled against the odds until, out of

the blue with no warning signs, he was

diagnosed with incurable cancer.

Eight weeks later, he died.


Michael Neill Clifton Gascoigne, Solicitor

and Writer to the Signet, born in Inverness on

1 February 1949, and died in Victoria

Hospital, Kirkcaldy on 11 June 2021



Chairman, Cramond and Barnton Community Council

Died: 18 April 2021

A HEARTFELT tribute was provided at a recent

Cramond and Barnton Community Council

meeting following the death of its Chairman

of some 10 years, Andrew Mather.

Ross Wilkinson, who served as Vice-

Chairman throughout much of the time,

reflected on the energy and commitment that

had singled Andrew out as a natural Chairman

and leader after his election in 2011. Over the

years there were many sensitive issues on

which Andrew led the engagement process

with stakeholders, including Edinburgh Airport,

Lothian Buses and The City of Edinburgh

Council. His patience and tenacity were

qualities which were often called upon.

Preparatory meetings were routinely hosted

at his home and the office bearers were always

grateful for his hospitality and that of his

wife, Anne.


The benefits of working cooperatively was not

lost on him and he was instrumental in

bringing together the other local North West

Edinburgh community councils to strive to

progress the many issues which transcended

the respective catchment areas. The strength

of partnership working was also what saw him

establish a Collaborative Group covering the

various local groups including the Cramond

Association, Friends of the River Almond

Walkway, Friends of Cammo and the Cramond

Heritage. Fostering improved understanding of

what each was doing and striving to work

mutually in a supportive manner – and

eliminate duplication - were what lay behind

this initiative. Here again, Andrew’s home was

regularly the venue for these meetings.

Having undergone a serious neurosurgical

operation about four years ago some thought

Andrew would step down – or at least take a

back seat. Those who knew him were not

surprised when following a brief interlude he

was back – and with a renewed vigour. The golf

clubs were out again and the Chairman’s gavel.

The determination and resolve that drove him

to continue to challenge stakeholders, in

particular The City of Edinburgh Council,

was unrelenting. The golf remained work

in progress.

This brief tribute can inevitably only scratch

the surface of remembering Andrew. He

touched the lives of many in the Cramond and

Barnton area where he spent the vast majority

of his life. An elder of the Kirk and a member

and past office bearer of the Bruntsfield Golf

Club, and he always had a smile and a kind

thought about others. The community and his

family are the lesser for his passing.







Rescue, reunite, rehome. Edinburgh

Dog and Cat Home accepts any

animal which reaches its door in

need, and works tirelessly to secure

happy and loving forever homes.

They need donations.

26 Seafield Road East EH15 1EH

0131 669 5331

Subscribe today and have your own

copy of The Edinburgh Reporter

delivered in a compostable envelope

to your front door from next month.

Pay just £2.50 a month or £30 a year

and help to support local

independent news.


Very reasonable rates allow start-ups

to use this small pop-up space as the

first rung on the ladder. From food to

political parties and all manner of

organisations in between. Have a look

at their pop-up garden when you visit.

Croall Place EH7 4LT


Love Your Business networking club is

relaxed informal and good fun, and is

now online on the last Thursday of the

month with a host of inspiring

speakers sharing their entrepreneurial

journeys and invaluable business tips.



Award-winning 90-minute or 3 hour

long sightseeing cruises from the

Hawes Pier at South Queensferry with

landing trips on Inchcolm Island.

Ideal for families, couples and groups

alike. Daily sailings throughout

the summer.







This year the shop celebrates their

40th birthday with an amazing diverse

range of cards, stationery gifts

supporting local makers,

manufacturers and illustrators Now

open and all stock is also available

online or for local bike delivery!


Di Giorgio’s have lots of cakes and

slices, coffee with a smile and pasta

and lasagne to go. Morning rolls and

ciabattas are also available, but this is

brownie heaven and do ask about

their birthday cakes.

Open 7 days 10-4pm

1 Brandon Terrace EH3 5EA

This is an easy, convenient and

eco-friendly alternative to a supermarket

shop. Working in partnership

with independent retailers, Tim at

Schop offers to deliver a huge range of

great quality food and drink straight to

your door - saving you a journey.


Bespoke tailoring for men. Craig’s

focus is on making the highest quality

personally tailored attire that others

will aspire to. His pyjamas and dressing

gowns will make your video calls

so stylish!

0131 226 7775 • 45 Thistle Street

EH2 1DY • craigbankstailoring.com

Subscribe today and have your own

copy of The Edinburgh Reporter

delivered in a compostable envelope

to your front door from next month.

Pay just £2.50 a month or £30 a year

and help to support local

independent news.







Subscribe today and have your very

own copy of The Edinburgh Reporter

delivered by Royal Mail in a

compostable envelope to your front

door from next month.

Pay just £2.50 a month to support

local independent news.


A specialist importer of boutique fine

wines from Italy. Carefully hand-picked

award-winning wines of premium

quality sourced direct from the

winemakers. Oleg and Elvira visit every

vineyard personally. Free UK delivery

- same day delivery to Edinburgh

available. www.independent.wine

Independent fishmonger, Daniel,

provides quality fresh and cured fish.

At the beginning of lockdown there

was some question over availability -

but this wee shop has kept going. Use

Schop to have your fish delivered.

16a Broughton Street EH1 3RH

0131 556 7614

A unique gallery and gift shop in

Edinburgh’s Southside - a cornucopia

of all forms of art. Buy handmade art

and craft from independent artists.

Linsay says: “If we don’t have it, we can

probably find it for you.”


0131 629 9123

The care charity and community hub

look forward to welcoming all regular

and new customers back . All safety

measures outlined by the Government

are being followed. For the latest

information on room booking, classes

and events, visit their website.







Ardgowan Distillery has launched

Shipwright, its second whisky in the

Clydebuilt series. Whiskymaker, Max

McFarlane: “It is a truly sumptuous

dram, made to ignite your

imagination of far-off lands.” Free

shipping and branded nosing glass.


A luxurious, elegant salon with a very

happy and friendly atmosphere where

the aim is to make your experience

relaxing, enjoyable and glamorous.

Appointment essential.

0131 556 4478

2a Broughton Place EH1 3RX


The floating café is owned and run by

Lindsay and sits just next to the

Leamington Lift Bridge on the canal.

With their range of smoothies and

coffees accompanied by macarons

and a host of other treats, it is not to

be missed. They have tables and

chairs now. EH3 9PD

You may know about Leith (Saturdays)

and Stockbridge (Sundays) Markets

but did you know that you can order

online and pick up all of your shopping

at once? Using the NeighbourFood

site you simply choose what you want

pay and then collect.


Voted Best Therapy Practice 2021. The

practice has worked hard over six

years to create client focused sessions

of Reflexology, Energy Medicine,

Reikie, EFT and Talk Energy Sessions.

£55 for one session or £200 for four.

Call Heidi Grillo on 07786 542 315



of themonth



The city may feel less busy this

August but there are still

hundreds of events and

activities for all tastes.

Here’s our day by day guide

Ray Harryhausen’s

Medusa model from

the film, Clash

of the Titans

The Edinburgh Kilo is on today from 10am at Out

1 of the Blue Drill Hall, 36 Dalmeny St, where the

café is open daily. The idea is that you choose

from the retro fashion on offer and pay by the kilo. Bring

your own bag. £2 admission.



Time for a visit to the Scottish National Gallery of

Modern Art where the Ray Harryhausen - Titan of

Cinema exhibition continues until 20 February

2022. Film special effects superstar elevated stop motion

animation to an art with films such as Jason and the

Argonauts. His innovative and inspiring films, from the

fifties onwards, changed modern movie

making forever. For the first time, highlights

chosen from the whole of Ray’s collection are

showcased in the largest and widest-ranging

exhibition of his work ever seen.



Archie Brennan Tapestry Goes Pop! Pop artist,

weaver, bodybuilder and former Mr Scotland,

Archie Brennan changed the course of modern

weaving and is considered one of the greatest

unrecognised pop artists of the 20th century.

Unrecognised because he chose to work in tapestry.

Exhibition at Dovecot Studios 10 Infirmary Street, EH1

1LT from 10am to 5pm. Tickets £9.50.


hosts a session for young people exploring different art

making techniques.


River Dipping with Water of Leith Conservation

5 Trust at 2pm for children between 7 and 11.

Drop off event.



Edinburgh Zoo After Hours Nights at

Corstorphine Road. Food and drink kiosks

available and acoustic music on the main lawn.

Timed entry from 6pm. Adults only on 13-14 August.


Free event with RSPB Scotland at Lauriston Castle

7 from 10am to 4pm. A chance to hear about your

local feathered friends and to get a chance to do

a quick art activity. Double up with a picnic and family

day in the gardens. Free, drop-in, no need to book.

2 Cramond Road South, EH4 6AD. Tel 0131 529 3993

Scotland’s Gardens Scheme invite you to 5

8 Greenbank Crescent, EH10 5TE. Newly designed,

sloping terraced garden with views over

Braidburn Valley Park to the Pentlands. Colourful chaos of

herbaceous plants, shrubs, roses and small trees. Features

include a gazebo, pergola, greenhouse and water feature.



North Edinburgh Arts is running summer

sessions for all ages. This one is for young people

aged 11+. Every Wednesday a variety of artists


A Grand Night For Singing is an Edinburgh

International Festival event at Edinburgh

Academy Junior School. The glitz and glamour of



the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals

such as Carousel and The King and I, will

entertain you for 90 minutes. Conceived and

created by Tony Award-winning director and

choreographer Walter Bobbie, A Grand Night

for Singing took Broadway by storm at its

opening in 1993. This new staging is conceived

by Kim Criswell, one of today’s pre-eminent

musical theatre singer/actors. She stars in the

production, one of a handpicked cast of

brilliant musical theatre performers that also

includes lyric soprano Danielle de Niese.



A voyage around the Scottish islands.

Join the National Library of Scotland's

Map Curator, Chris Fleet, for a fully

illustrated excursion through Scotland's

islands. The circumnavigation of Scotland will

use selected maps to provide insights into the

distinctive history of particular islands. The

voyage will also look at who made these

maps and how they did it. 2-3pm Free.


Fringe by the Sea in North Berwick

11 takes place from 6-15 August. There

are 150 events in all - and sadly

some sessions are already sold out. On 11

August Brian Taylor speaks to Richard

Demarco, CBE, in a lunchtime blether.

Everything here from guided walks, comedy,

music, spoken word and yoga. Easy to get

Roan Lavery / Unsplash

there by train from Edinburgh Waverley or by East

Coast Buses. Also on 15 August STORM will pay a visit

to the seaside.

First unveiled in Glasgow, STORM is something to

behold. Standing 10 metres tall, the puppet walks to

a soundscape created by Portobello resident,

Mairi Campbell.


Curious is a programme of events run by the

12 Royal Society of Edinburgh bringing Scotland’s

leading thinkers and practitioners together with

the public for an informal conversation. Join in the Tea

and Talk events at 3pm every day on Zoom, reminiscent

of the coffee house discussions during the Scottish

Enlightenment. Book early as numbers are limited.

Leith Comedy Festival’s Lassies of Leith at 3pm

13 and 4 pm. Join Invisible Cities’ award-winning

tour guide, Paul, as he returns to tell you all

about the women of Leith throughout history, from Mary

of Guise to the former owner of the Port o' Leith, Mary

Moriarty. This joyful walking tour is packed with historical

curiosities and uproarious anecdotes that will make you

gasp with amazement and roar with laughter. Dates

between 7-29 August.


Edinburgh Climate Festival 2021 at Leith Links

14 East from noon to 7pm. The event is free and

family-friendly and will be an opportunity to

celebrate and inspire climate action. There will be

upcycling workshops, henna painting, seed planting

workshops. Free bike repairs, e-bike trials, swap shop for

clothes and books, yoga classes and music. Search for

Edinburgh Climate Festival on Facebook.

Above: Pack your bucket and

spade for Fringe By The Sea

Below: Link up for Edinburgh

Climate Festival in Leith

Admission to Fruitmarket Gallery on Market

15 Street is free, but you must book on Eventbrite to

secure an arrival time to see the opening

exhibition, a retrospective by artist Karla Black with two

new works included at the newly reopened and extended

gallery. But you can go in at any time to the café or to fill

your water bottle at their newly commissioned £15,000

water fountain. This was created by artist Tania Kovats

and is intended for visitors to fill their own water bottles.


The Laughing Horse’s Free Festival Fringe has a

16 full programme of events between 6-30 August

with some events which are Pay What You Want

and others where Fringe goers can actually turn up in

person. But you must have a ticket as this is the only way

that their venues can run events safely. For your outing

today we think the best of the best is, well…the best . The

Best of Fringe Stand up takes place at 32 Below

(32 West Nicolson Street).


Edinburgh International Book Festival 14-30

17 August. Today Sara Sheridan appears at the Book

Festival in person talking about On the Scent of

Untold Riches. There cannot be many novelists in the

world who have a sideline in perfume production, but

Sara Sheridan is one of them. The Edinburgh-based

author runs a company named Reek whose scents

celebrate “powerful, unapologetic women” and their

often-overlooked stories. This passion for the evocative

qualities of perfume has been of particular use in

researching The Fair Botanists, a thrilling new historical

novel that Sheridan launches today.


The Edinburgh International Film Festival goes

18 back to its original time slot in August. The fun

begins today until 25 August with the opening

gala Michael Sarnoski’s Pig with Nicholas Cage as a

reclusive truffle hunter and closes with the UK premiere

of Here Today from the comedy legend, Billy Crystal.



of films.

From today for a week Film Fest in the City

will return to St Andrew Square in partnership

with Essential Edinburgh. Outdoor screenings


Stobo Castle Ladies Day at Musselburgh

Racecourse. The place to be seen this month

wearing your most stylish outfits.



Edinburgh Craft Beer Festival is on 20-21 August

at Edinburgh Corn Exchange. Thirty world class

breweries will pour hundreds of beers along with




What appear to be hundreds of events at

Summerhall during the Festival are available

to watch online. Covering all creative offerings

like theatre, dance, some music and physical theatre,

there is also a range of happenings at the Secret

Courtyard. One of those takes place tomorrow 24

August and is an opportunity to meet Martin Creed, thr

Turner-Prize winning artist-performer-composer who

has such a big influence in the city with the

remodelling of the Scotsman Steps and the Everything

is Going to be Alright installation at the Modern Art

Gallery. We are told there may be piano juggling.


Damian Albarn, former Blur frontman has a

24 brand new show which will be presented in

the pavilion at Edinburgh Park. Accompanied

by a band and string quartet, this rare solo appearance

will feature music from his new work The Nearer The

Fountain, More Pure the Stream Flows, as well as other

music from his back catalogue.


From 22-25 August Chrissie Hynde & Co will

25 appear at Queen’s Hall singing Bob Dylan and

other songs. These will be four stripped back

shows featuring songs from Hynde’s latest album,

recorded almost entirely by text message. Special

guests for all four shows will be The Rails, Kami

Thompson (daughter of musicians Richard and Linda)

and James Walbourne (guitarist with The Pretenders) -

previous winners of Best New Artist at the BBC Radio 2

Folk Awards. Tickets £34.50.


Kokoroko will appear as part of the Edinburgh

26 International Festival at Edinburgh Park.

Tickets £21-26. Bringing feelgood Afrobeat

music from London, this mellow eight-piece collective

takes its name from the Nigerian Urhobo dialect,

meaning “be strong”. Their music celebrates a longrunning

tradition of West African legends such as Fela

Kuti, Tony Allen and Ebo Taylor, while giving it a 21st

century update with warm jazz and soul arrangements.


was co-written with Siobhan Fahey (with whom

Hodgens was romantically linked for a while) and

made it to No.8 in the UK singles chart on its original

release in 1984.


The Normal at Talbot Rice Gallery, EH8 9YL is

28 part of Edinburgh Art Festival. This exhibition

reflects life during the pandemic exploring the

asymmetrical effect of it on society due to socioeconomic

and racial inequality. The artworks express

hope, grief, survival, violence and solidarity and the

need for reorienting to planetary health after the

Covid-19 wake up call.


The Bluebells at The Old Dr Bells Baths at

27 7.00pm. The Bluebells were a Scottish pop

group in the 1980s. Peddling a kind of jangly

guitar pop not dissimilar to their Scottish

contemporaries Aztec Camera and Orange Juice, they

had three hit singles in the UK, all written by guitarist

and founder member Bobby Bluebell (aka Robert

Hodgens) - "I'm Falling" with Ken McCluskey, "Cath",

and their biggest success "Young At Heart". The latter

Jupiter Rising is on this weekend from 28-31

29 August. Held at Jupiter Artland at Wilkieston it

is another hangover from last year. It is a

camping festival with music for all ages to revel in art,

music and nature. There are some luxury add ons such

as Wild Dining and a Gateway Bathing Session in the

Joanna Vasconcelos designed heated swimming pool,

itself a work of art.


pop-up food stalls and music. Tickets for over-18s only

include beer and a free tasting glass.


Monkey Barrel Comedy returns during the

22 Fringe in August at 9-11 Blair Street, EH1 1QR.

Tonight will be the final show by Nish Kumar

which is a work-in-progress show ahead of his 2022

tour. He said: “It has been a period of upheaval and

uncertainty with Covid and the political situation. You

will be amazed by my capacity to somehow take all of

these things personally.” Tickets £6. Lots more shows

and big names to choose from.


Chrissie Hynde, above, will

appear at Queen’s Hall

Damian Albarn, top right, will

perform at Edinburgh Park

Right, Make panda pals at

Edinburgh Zoo After Hours


Meet at Main Visitor Car Park at Hopetoun

30 House for an August wander - a popular

month to get out and explore. Enjoy this

Ranger-led walk taking in interesting corners of

Hopetoun. Walk around the historic landscape of

Hopetoun House and onto the Estate, including

Abercorn Church. Bring a snack/lunch. Not suitable for

children under 12. Cost: Grounds entry fee £5.50 adult,

£3.50 child. Booking essential.


Book a tour of Edinburgh with a guide from

31 Invisible Cities. These can be either in person

or virtually. More information here about the

charity which has turned people who previously

experienced homelessness into tour guides.



Jess Shurte Photography


Compiled by David Albury

Ladies Day

photo finish

Edith Bowman takes to the decks at Musselburgh


podcast host Edith Bowman, is

returning to Musselburgh

Racecourse to host the After Racing

Party at the popular Stobo Castle

Ladies Day.

The former Radio 1 DJ, who now

presents the weekly Soundtracking

podcast on which she interviews

film-makers about their musical

influences, will take to the decks

following the final race at the East

Lothian track on Friday 20 August.

More than 5,000 are expected to

attend the glamorous summer racing

event which will be the largest race

day staged at Musselburgh since the

start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Anstruther-born Edith, who was a

regular BBC Radio 1 presenter before

moving on to a number of other

high-profile radio and television

presenting roles, including most

recently The BAFTA Awards

alongside co-host Dermot O’Leary,

is no stranger to Musselburgh

Racecourse and hosted the last

Stobo Castle Ladies Day celebrations

in 2019.

Musselburgh Racecourse

marketing manager, Aisling

Johnston, said: “We are delighted

Edith is able to join us at what is our

premier race day of the summer Flat


“Despite the ongoing challenges of

the pandemic, we are pulling out the

stops to stage a boutique Ladies Day,

which will be smaller in scale but will

have all the trappings of our

Jess Shurte Photography

traditionally glamorous event.

“Edith was a huge hit when she last

appeared at Musselburgh and we are

sure our guests on 20 August will

make it another special afternoon

and evening, as she puts the seal on

what we hope will be a superb

afternoon of high fashion and first

class sport.”

Edith Bowman added: “I am

delighted to be returning to

Musselburgh for Stobo Castle Ladies

Day and I can promise for the 5,000

guests attending that we will make

this a day to remember. It has been

such a challenging time for many of

TV and radio presenter Edith Bowman is

returning to Stobo Castle Ladies Day at

Musselburgh Racecourse


1 A ragman provides an example (7)

5 Realist about this form of cross (7)

9 Repel such attacks on this tomb (9)

10 In Qatar, hombre is a real diamond

geezer ! (5)

11 Calculating the Pools, needing a

lot to make this payment to the

elderly (3-3,7)

13 Lent rigs out for money (8)

15 Change term as prelude to

deciding to arrange classes (6)

17 Some deacons ultimately reach

this rank in the embassy (6)

19 Golfing cry, and what it does in

advance ? (8)

22 Tip ice over barrel - there is no way

back from this position (13)

25 Go for a walk, like Chaplin,

perhaps (5)

26 Make too little of oneself, lends

rule to others (9)

27 Ready to arrange matters from the

earliest point (4,3)

28 Ensured arrangement for final

purchaser (3,4)


1 In addition, part of the total

sometimes appears here (4)

2 Sanction action to arrange pop rave (7)

3 During period of Home Rule, dictator

was in charge of the country (5)

4 Wood found scattered among hay (8)

5 Phrase used to describe assistant

on climb (6)

6 Spectacle ruined by rotten gel (9)

7 So I lied about worship ! (7)

8 Various bank men met here, beside

the river (10)

12 Stay chirpy, undergoing such

treatment (10)

14 Punch a lad, then take off from here (9)

16 Staple diet in prison? (8)

18 Ivan ran into trouble over (7)

20 Change gas, else time cannot be

measured (7)

21 Some Yugoslav aunts cry ‘begone!’ (6)

23 Having nothing to do, made a hole in

a piece of wood (5)

24 Insult contained in this lurid tale (4)


Across: 1 Anagram, 5 Saltire, 9 Sepulchre, 10 Rhomb, 11 Old-age pension, 13 Sterling, 15 Stream,

17 Consul, 19 Forewarn, 22 Irrecoverable, 25 Tramp, 26 Undersell, 27 Year dot, 28 End user.

Down: 1 Also, 2 Approve, 3 Ruled, 4 Mahogany, 5 Sherpa, 6 Lorgnette, 7 Idolise, 8 Embankment,

12 Psychiatry, 14 Launchpad, 16 Porridge, 18 Nirvana, 20 Ageless, 21 Avaunt, 23 Bored, 24 Slur.

Alan Rennie

us and this will be a great occasion to

let our collective hair down, to laugh

and dance with friends and to just be

in the company of those dear to us.”

Stobo Castle’s Marketing Director

Jenni Watts, added: “Stobo Castle

Ladies Day is well established as one

of Scotland’s most stylish, exciting

and fun events of the summer and

we are very pleased to continue our

long association with Musselburgh

Racecourse. Staging this key event is

an important step forward for the

hospitality sector as we welcome

back guests who have supported both

our businesses through the difficult

challenges of the last 18 months.”


Juliet’s food diary



Bonnie & Wild steps forward with posh click and collect

AS I’M TRYING TO get my step count up at

the moment, the newly opened and much

anticipated Bonnie & Wild Scottish

Marketplace might just be the eatery for me.

And what might that be, you ask?

Well, it’s a posh food court to you and me,

and let us all be grateful there’s no mention of

“street food”. Aiming to deliver the best of

Scotland’s larder, it features three bars, eight

“chef led” food stalls, a private events area and

demonstration kitchen. It’s rather an elegant

and pleasant venue, situated on the upper floor

of the new St James Quarter.

The idea is that with a plethora of cuisine to

choose from, including Creel Caught by

MasterChef winner Gary Maclean, Rico’s Pasta,

East Pizzas and vegan offering Erpingham

House, a group of fussy chums can all eat

completely different dishes.

You can each order and pay for your food

and drinks at the various stalls, and are given a

buzzer to alert you to pick up your food. Now

call me a party pooper, but if I were to be

paying £29.95 for Creel Caught’s Six

Langoustine, Kombu Seaweed Butter, Fennel

Lemon Salad and Skinny Fries, I’d rather like it

delivered to me, in part because I like to dine

out in killer heels and don’t fancy the idea of

tottering up to fetch my meal.

It’s a “build it and they will come” concept

and time will tell if people take to upmarket

self-service. It is a pity it’s not aimed at kids as

my daughter and her pals would find it great

fun. If you’re not dining in, then Bonnie &

Wild also feature four speciality retailers

including MacDuff 1890 which is a butchery

counter - so you are in luck, the next time

you’re doing a Zara haul and have a hankering

for some lamb chops.

Of course Bonnie & Wild could perhaps do a

novelty evening where the chefs berate you for

not picking up your plates quickly enough and

call you a useless cretin, or words to that effect.

Kitchen bullying has been the talk of the

tables recently and it’s not surprising.

Chefs have a tendency to consider their job

one of the most pressured and phrases such

as “emotions run high” are bandied about like

parsley garnish.

I would imagine another high pressured

profession to be open heart surgery yet I doubt

many cardiologists rant, rave and start

Bonnie & Wild Scottish

Marketplace at

St James Quarter

Kitchen capers

chucking scalpels around when it all gets too

much. Talented though many top chefs may be,

if you have to behave badly to get the best out

of your staff you simply aren’t the sharpest knife

in the drawer.

Whether these allegations turn out to be true

or not it’s definitely time to rethink kitchen

culture. One of the happiest kitchens I’ve ever

visited (apart from my own when I was a chef)

was at Trump Turnberry - the executive chef,

Callum Dow, was very aware of the emotional

wellbeing of his staff. So if Donald Trump can

own an establishment where kitchens are

decent places to work, there really isn’t an

excuse for anyone else.

If it’s charming table service you’re after, I’d

highly recommend a visit to The Dalmore Inn

in Blairgowrie where the utterly charming

Arnaud will look after you well. The food here

is excellent and in a warm, elegant setting. I

asked Armaud what brought him from Italy to

Scotland? He simply shrugged: “A woman!” She

must have been a stunner. The highlight of my

lunch was the pavlova with local berries.

Utterly delicious.

Juliet Lawrence Wilson

Like many pleasurable things in life, if

it’s not messy you’re not doing it right.

This certainly applies to me when I eat

seafood abroad, as I love the way it’s

presented in the most unclinical form,

forcing you to get your fingers sticky.

A local heatwave combined with

missing foreign climes made me crave

food reminiscent of holidays, like the

smell you get passing by Fishers at

The Shore. Here are a couple of

recipes to be served with a bib and

finger bowl. Both serve two.

• 8 large raw prawns, shells on,

remove the heads if you must

• 5 tbs Oloroso sherry

• 4 tbs Nduja (the paste version

from a jar)

• Chopped parsley

Place the prawns and sherry into a

pan and simmer for three minutes or

until the prawns have turned pink

and opaque. Remove the prawns and

add the nduja to the sherry, stir and

reduce until the liquid is syrupy in

consistency. Toss the prawns in the

sauce, garnish with parsley and serve

with a crisp salad.



• 6 fresh sardines gutted and


• knob of butter

• 1 clove garlic

• 2 tbs capers

• 1 spring onion, finely shredded

• 1 lemon, finely zested and juiced

• 3 tbs olive oil

• 2 handfuls fresh soft herbs of your

choice (I use basil and parsley)

Wash and pat dry the sardines and

on one side score three times. Season

and rub a little butter in the slits.

Add all the other ingredients to a

blender and pulse until you have a

rough paste. Grill the sardines for a

couple of minutes each side and top

with the salsa verde, cut side of the

fish up. Serve on toasted sourdough

bread with roasted red peppers.



A soprano in

our midst

Andrea Baker to perform

groundbreaking musical

piece celebrating

female identity at

the festival

F. Parenzan

Andrea Baker is an American

born mezzo soprano but is

Scottish by choice. Her career

has taken her to San

Francisco, Germany and most

recently Australia with her

then partner now husband who is originally

from Inverness.

She has been singing since a small child, first

taught by her mum and then by her church

minister who was a trained tenor.

She said: "The joke in my family is that I

‘came out’ singing. I come from a musical

family, and have always wanted to be a singer. I

started singing recitals as a young kid and

singing classical music. And back in the day, in

the 70s, when I was growing up, schools still

had orchestras and we performed operas and

musical theatre. Since my first opera in high

school, I have been singing continually, and

made my debut in San Francisco."

Scotland has always featured

prominently in her career as she got her

first professional job as an opera singer at San

Francisco Opera under chorus master Ian

Robertson who is also from Edinburgh.

A professional singer since 1994, she has

now decided that she will tackle something

quite challenging for the Edinburgh

International Festival 2021 - and again

it has Scottish connections.

Commissioned by American opera singer

Jessye Norman, and financed by New Yorker

Henry Kravis, woman:life:song is a

collaboration by five eminent women. The

music was written by Scottish composer, Judith

Weir, and the poetry is by Maya Angelou, Toni

Morrison and Clarissa Pinkola Estés. The poets

composed new poems based on the stages of a

woman’s life from the perspective of a woman

through childhood, love, puberty, loss, and

maturity. Weir set the texts to music and

There are many

adventures in front of

me that I never

expected to happen,

and this is one of them

Norman performed it at The Proms in 2000.

Little performed or recorded, it is a complex

piece. Baker admits that she idolised Maya

Angelou who, like her, started in Porgy

and Bess.

Andrea said: "It feels like a piece to me that

needs to be sung. It needs to be...these words,

these feelings, this story needs to come out.

And although it comes from a particularly

African American perspective, this woman

could be any woman. And it goes through

youth, it goes through sorrow, the joy of first

love, loss, and it brings you out the other end,

looking forward to a new adventure. After

Covid, there are many adventures in front of

me that I never expected to happen, and this is

one of them."

Baker will perform with her "old college

buddy" William Eddins, and also the Chineke!

Orchestra. She said: "The orchestra is Britain

and Europe's only black and minority ethnic

orchestra. They're an extraordinary band, and

I'm honoured to be standing on the stage with

the black team performing classical music at

the International Festival in my home city."

Chineke! with William Eddins and Andrea Baker,

17 August, at Edinburgh Academy Junior

School. www.eif.co.uk


Prince Philip:

A Celebration

Holyrood Palace exhibition charts Duke’s colourful Royal life


summer exhibition featuring paintings

and articles which were important to

HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh,

has opened at Holyrood Palace.

His legacy is commemorated in

“Prince Philip: A Celebration” - first planned for the

Duke’s 100th birthday which sadly he did not live to

celebrate, and is a partner exhibition to one at

Windsor Castle.

The exhibition runs until 31 October and is included

in the palace admission ticket, while a book related to

the exhibition is available in the gift shop.

Included in the dsiplay is a pennant which bears his

standard showing one quadrant with three lions for

England, and, representing his family ties: the hearts of

Denmark, the cross of Greece, pails or batons for his

family name Mountbatten, along with a depiction of

Edinburgh Castle.

Prince Philip had many strong connections to

Edinburgh - not the least of which was his title which

was bestowed upon him on the eve of his marriage to

then Princess Elizabeth. Items from the Royal

Wedding in 1947, including the wedding invitation,

order of service and wedding breakfast menu, are set

out in one of the display cases.

Among the treasures on display is the silver-gilt

casket presented to His Royal Highness with the

Freedom of the City of Edinburgh in 1949, on public

display for the first time. One of his earliest visits with

his new wife-to-be was a trip to Edinburgh. On

receiving the Freedom he made a speech recalling his

memories of going to the “Burg”, as he and his naval

colleagues called the capital. He was stationed briefly

at Rosyth, and talked of the warm welcome which

Top right - The kilt Prince

Philip wore at Balmoral

Above - One of the exhibition

rooms at the palace

JL Preece

Scotland gave to servicemen during the war. The

casket was made by city jewellers Hamilton & Inches.

Another item on display is a silver windmill which

he received as a gift from J. Arthur Rank on a visit to

Caledonia Flour Mills in Leith. Mr Rank was better

known for his career in film than the Leith flour mill

owned by his family where he received the Duke of

Edinburgh. There is a very interesting and really clear

Pathé film of the visit to Edinburgh of the 1955 visit

which can be found on Google.

Visitors will be able to admire the silver model of

HMY Britannia presented to The Queen and The Duke

of Edinburgh by Lloyd’s Register of Shipping in 1972

and Sir Hugh Casson’s original design sketches for the

yacht’s sun lounge and dining room. Although King

George VI commissioned the yacht it was very much

finished to a design for Prince Philip and HM The

Queen. The Duke travelled on HMY Britannia to

undertake his first solo overseas tour in 1956-7,

opening the Olympic Games in Melbourne before

visiting the Antarctic. Prince Philip’s copy of the

programme from the Olympic Games is on display,

alongside two paintings by the artist Edward Seago,

who accompanied the Prince on the tour and is

believed to have been the first professional artist to

paint views of the Antarctic. The Royal Yacht Britannia

is now very much at home in Leith, is open to visitors,

and has won all manner of awards.

Prince Philip was educated in Scotland at

Gordonstoun and the foundations for the Duke of

Edinburgh Award arose from his relationship with the

school's founder and headmaster Kurt Hahn. Hahn

suggested establishing a programme helping young

people to achieve their potential through physical

activity, and supporting their local community. More

than six million young people in the UK have taken

part in the scheme since its inception in 1956.

The exhibition closes with a range of paintings from

Prince Philip's personal collection. He visited the

Royal Scottish Academy from the 1960s onwards, and

bought paintings which were hung in the private

apartments in Holyrood and other royal residences.

One of the paintings on show is by Victoria Crowe, a

graduate of Edinburgh College of Art, and show His

Royal Highness's interests in landscape and wildlife.

Prince Philip: A Celebration is part of a visit to the Palace

of Holyroodhouse until 31 October.

JL Preece

Saying it with flowers

Paintings bloom at art & craft exhibition

THE EXPRESSION of Flowers by

Stirlingshire artist Angelene Perry

is the summer exhibition at the

Art & Craft Collective gallery in

Causewayside. The exhibition

opens on 7 August and runs until

2 October.

After several years lecturing at

Forth Valley College, Angelene left

to pursue her artistic career full

time in 2016. This is her first

Edinburgh exhibition and focuses

on her love of capturingflowers,

wild and cultivated, in pen

and ink.

"We're delighted to showcase

the work of a talented emerging

artist such as Angelene," said



Linsay Given Black, Art & Craft

Collective's director. "Her work is

lovely and deserves as wide

exposure as possible."

Art walk strides ahead

with new festival


ART WALK PORTY is chalking up

another programme of events,

exhibitions, art houses, artist

led-walks, book launches,

performances, film nights and

pop-up spaces from 4-12

September, with the full programme

announced around 10 August.

Established in 2015, the Art Walk

has grown into a range of individual

projects taking place at sites in and

around Portobello, often working

with lost or under-visited spaces.

The core activity - a two week

festival of contemporary art -

celebrates the local community and

creative spirit of Edinburgh’s seaside

town, with many local artists opening

up their houses to the public.

A new Project Room Pop-up is

now open at 189 Portobello High

Street (Portobello Baptist Church),

showing a range of works from

recent artist residencies, along with

associated works from artists near

and far.

The first exhibition, Planted,

(which runs until 14 August) shows a

series of installations, artworks and

short films that draw upon the

physical act of planting and

relationships with the natural

environment, with artists Annie Lord

(The Neighbouring Orchard), Felicity

Bristow and Susie Wilson, Jonathan

Baxter/A&E, Joanne Matthews and

Hsin-Yi Wang, and Hayley Harrison.




Photos by Laura Vida

Turn-up for the books

Pristine publications for children in second-hand book shops

No need to be

picky - Edinburgh’s


bookshops are

second to none



Football and Life

from Wartime to


By Cliff Hague

Pitch Publishing


Programmes! Football

and Life from Wartime to

Lockdown is a dig

through a collection of

2,000 programmes. From the days when paper

was rationed and getting a team out depended

on army leave, to today’s fat, glossy match-day

magazines showcasing global stars and offshore

gambling, the programmes weave the stories.

They tell of the evolution of football and of the

lives of players and fans, grounds and towns, Ford

Zephyrs and car phones, coal miners and

cryptocurrencies. On this journey through time

we encounter villains and heroes, tragedies and

celebrations, noodle partners and fan-owned

clubs. It’s a journey spiced with bad poetry,

adverts for sex magazines, boy bands who never

made it, and explanations of a “magic sponge” for

American converts to the beautiful game.

There are unlikely World Cup winners,

schoolboy internationals destined for stardom

and others whose glimpse of glory proved

fleeting, along with first-hand accounts of

unforgettable games, the crush of the crowd and

matches in Eastern Europe as the Soviet Block

unravelled. Programmes! Programmes! will

rekindle memories for generations of fans. It is a

“must” for lovers of football nostalgia, with

fascinating, funny and quirky tales galore.

WOULD YOU like to kit out your child with

an engrossing, varied library? Would you

prefer to do so without breaking the bank?

Few seem to realise that they can source

immaculate copies of children’s books – both

new and old – in second-hand shops. You

just need to know where to look.

There’s a strange sort of stigma

surrounding second-hand children’s books

in our (supposedly) environmentallyconscious

age. Many imagine them to be

grubby, torn and unhygienic, so totally

unsuitable for children. But that’s not the

case. Or at least, it doesn’t have to be. The

best second-hand bookshops in Edinburgh

are extremely picky about their stock. And

even in a less pernickety shop, you will find

copies that have barely been touched, let

alone read.

So why not do your bit for the planet, your

pocket, and, of course, your child, by

investigating the following:

Laughter is the

Best Weapon

By Charles Ritchie

BooksPen &

Sword Books

SOME READERS may have had

the opportunity of meeting

Brigadier Charles Ritchie, a bon

viveur, recontour and thespian,

but principally an inspiring

military leader who sadly

passed away shortly before

Christmas last year. He died

suddenly, two days after he

heard that the manuscript his

hilarious book “Laughter is the

St Columba’s Bookshop, 14-15

Brandon Terrace, Canonmills,


Open 10am-4pm (excluding Sundays)

The range and variety of pristine children’s

books here is second to none. As an

ex-primary school teacher, I can honestly say

that this shop has absolutely everything.

There’s a good-sized tray of clean, illustrated

“flats” (for 0-5s, which I often give as

presents), a section for early and struggling

readers (Usborne, Barrington Stoke etc.) and

plenty of quality chapter books, both new

and old. Also check out the non-fiction and

the classics. The manager Andy is a fussy

sorter and it shows! The books here are

always very reasonably priced and the

turnover rapid – you’ll find new stock every

week. A brand-new looking picture or

chapter book (usually £6.99) will set you

back about £2.

Best Weapon” had been

accepted by his publishers.

I counted Charles as a friend

and hence this review might be

slightly biased! Whenever you

met Charles there was an

anecdote and this entertaining

collection of stories taken from

throughout his distinguished

military career is described by

Sandy McCall Smith as being

“more funny than Evelyn


During his 38 years’ service as

a Royal Scot, Charles travelled

throughout the world with

postings in Yemen, Bosnia and

Northern Ireland to name but a

few, his graphic descriptions of

his escapades leave the reader

wanting to turn the page.

For me, the chapter on his

exploits as ADC to the Governor

of the State of Victoria in

Australia had me in stitches. The

Governor had decided to visit a

remote upstate township,

Charles was duly dispatched to

do a recce. During the visit The

Shire President, a large man,

questioned Charles how his wife

should curtsy when meeting

the Governor, Charles dutifully

demonstrated. Upon arrival of

Amnesty Bookshop, 12 Roseneath St,

Marchmont, EH9 1JH

Open 12pm-6pm (including Sundays)

Clean, friendly, spacious, airy. This

volunteer-run gem is situated in a peaceful

quarter just off the Meadows. I emerged

rather cock-a-hoop having purchased the

following: a pristine pop-up version of the

children’s classic “Guess How Much I Love

You?” (£1), a brand-new-appearing Costa

award-winning chapter book (£2), a

beautifully illustrated, interactive children’s

flat book about habitats (50p) and “50 Things

to Make and Do” by Usborne (not strictly

a book!) for a mere £2.50. As I browsed,

a small child sat engrossed on a stool.

She didn’t want to go, and neither did I.

But when I eventually did, I discovered

a cracking new café (Todd’s) just around

the corner.

Laura Vida

His Excellency the Governor a

few weeks later, the Shire

President promptly performed

a faultless curtsy! At which point

Charles hurried down the long

receiving line whispering

loudly, “only ladies curtsy.

Gentlemen nod your head.”

With an equally amusing

foreword by HRH The Princess

Royal, this is a very funny book

and an excellent choice for

summer reading!

Martin Hunt

Published by Pen & Sword at £20.



This book is a unique exploration of times past

and present as seen through a collection of

programmes, some for special occasions, some for

humdrum fixtures – each with a story to tell.

Amongst the folds, the half-time scores, league

tables, team changes, managers’ notes and

advertisements are legends and forgotten

favourites, the smell of liniment and the click of

the turnstiles.

What was needed to persuade a ref to take the

players off during an air raid?

How was “November-foggyish” Britain

introduced to Pepsi and American pizzazz?

When did women, black players and ethnic

restaurants start to appear in British programmes?

How did television change the game, again and

again, taking us from the terraces to the worldwide


Who were the golden boys and who were

the no-hopers among England’s 1966 World

Cup winners?

How did computer dating, IT and finance

industries replace local breweries and

manufacturing in the pages of programmes?

Or billionaire absentee owners or fan-owned

clubs collecting clothing for homeless people?

...and why are there 73 programmes of matches

involving Torquay United in the collection?

Cliff Hague grew up playing football in the

drizzly terraced streets of post-war Manchester,

idolising the Busby Babes and collecting football

programmes. Moving to Scotland in the late

1960s, eventually he became a globe-trotting

urban planning academic, consultant and author.

Like many men past their prime, he can still

picture vividly a goal he scored when he was

a boy.

Published by Pitch Publishing www.pitchpublishing

.co.uk/shop/programmes-programmes £16.99





Alan Rennie

Edinburgh City lends

support to Big Step



Kevin Nisbet enjoyed the

experience of Euro 2020


KEVIN NISBET managed a nine-day

summer break between international duty in

the European Championships and pre-season

training at the Hibernian Training Centre.

Whether the striker is still a Hibs’ player by

the time you read this is anyone’s guess but

even if his Easter Road tenure is only a year,

he has made a lasting impression on the fans

who never saw him play live.

He scored an impressive 18 goals in all

competitions for Hibs last season, breaking

into the Scotland senior squad in March and

retained his place for the Euros.

When he came on as a late substitute

against the Czech Republic he became the

first Hibs’ player to play for Scotland in a

major tournament since the legendary John

Blackley in 1974.

He said: “Euro 2020 was great on a

personal level and playing in the Euros

was a dream come true.

“Of course, we didn’t do as well as

we thought we would, but the experience

was great.”

Prior to the tournament, the striker became

the latest in a long list of Hibs’ players who

have scored for Scotland when he netted in a

warm-up game against the Netherlands.

“I just got myself in the box, in a good

position, and when you have players like

Andy Robertson and Kieran Tierney,

then they’ll find you. Robbo did and I stuck

it away.

“I think it just felt like another goal to be

fair, I’ve been used to scoring goals over the

past few seasons.

“I turned my phone on and it blew up, then

I realised how big of an achievement it was. It

was my first Scotland goal and I hope there’s

more to come.”

One of his Euro appearances was at Wembley

Stadium against England, where Scotland went

on to earn a very impressive draw.

“It was massive,” he continued, “I don’t

think you get a bigger game than Scotland

vs England.

“Down at Wembley the odds were against

us, so to go and put in a performance like that

was incredible and we got a well-deserved

draw. We had chances to win the game too.

“I think the biggest difference was belief. In

the first game it didn’t go our way, we had

chances but they scored two great goals.

“At Wembley we played with a lot of

belief, played good football and put England

on the back foot at times. We took confidence

from the first half performance into the

second half.”

Nisbet returned to competitive action with

Hibs against Santa Coloma in the Europa

Conference League qualifying tie, and scored

the third goal in a 3-0 victory in front of 4,700

fans, who were quick to show their

appreciation with a standing ovation.

EDINBURGH CITY have become the first

Scottish club to support The Big Step’s campaign

to end all gambling advertising and sponsorship

in football.

Gambling advertising is rife in Scottish football,

with many of the country’s top teams sponsored

by gambling companies, and until recently the

Scottish League Cup and the Scottish Premiership

were sponsored by William Hill and Ladbrokes,


The Big Step is a grassroots project, part of

the charity Gambling with Lives, that campaigns

to “kick gambling ads out of football” and their

campaign has won the support of several MPs,

including SNP’s Ronnie Cowan.

Tragically, there are an estimated 250–650

gambling-related suicides in the UK each year

with gambling addicts up to 15 times more like to

take their own lives than members of the general

population. There are between 430,000 and 1.2

million people addicted to gambling in the UK.

Jim Brown, chairman of Edinburgh City FC,

said: “We decided it was time to adopt an ethical

approach to all our partnerships. The pandemic

has shown just how much football has the

potential to be an immense power for good, so it

makes sense to us to reinforce only positive

messages both for physical and mental health.

We are delighted to support The Big Step in their

campaign as we share the same core values of

trying to change the existing reliance on

gambling in Scottish football.”

James Grimes, Founder of The Big Step and

formerly addicted to gambling, said: “We are

thrilled to have the support of Edinburgh City

during a pivotal time for gambling reform in this

country. For most of us involved with The Big

Step, the harmful relationship between gambling

and football was the gateway for years of

addiction – if only our clubs had taken this

stance, things may have been different for us.”

John Hislop

Amaya pictured with her trophy

and fellow driver, Archie Cannon

It’s child’s play for karter Amaya


eight-year-old go-karter from

Prestonpans, won the Scottish S

Plate title at Crail, the biggest

go-karting meeting of the year.

This is the ultimate title in

Scotland in the Bambino category.

It all started as a “bit of fun” for

her dad, Roy, who used to race


He began taking Amaya karting

when she was just four-years-old

and karting ticked the boxes as

something he could do with his

young daughter.

Amaya, a member at Larkhall

Circuit and Grampian Kart Club in

Banff, almost gave up hope when

earlier in the year, she continually

came in last in every race. She

even wrote her father a letter

telling him she wanted to give up

the sport.

But her persistence and practice

have paid off, and as Roy said,

everything just clicked at the


The capacity at the track was

limited by Covid restrictions to

only 500 people. This included all

competitors, support crew and

operational crew such as marshalls

and officials.

The Scottish S Plate is the top

title in Scotland, but Amaya will

now go forward to compete for

Amaya in Kart 33

the British title - but it all depends

on sponsorship, as karting is an

expensive sport to take part in.

If there are any possible

sponsors for this future Lewis

Hamilton out there then father

Roy would love to hear from them.

Venom Racing Engines

help Amaya to be fastest round

the track.


Live Edinburgh News

Martin Hunt rowing

back the years

Full time football is

goal for Player of

the Year Leah

The Edinburgh Reporter

Leah Eddie

Just Get Moving

Edinburgh Leisure programme encourages more active lifestyles


MARTIN HUNT was referred by his GP two

years ago to the Edinburgh Leisure Get

Moving programme. It is run in collaboration

with NHS Lothian to help people adopt a

healthier lifestyle.

Paulina Zawiska (pictured right), Active

Communities Supervisor with Edinburgh

Leisure, met Martin at one of the courses.

She said: "Once a person has been referred by

their GP we invite them to start with a ten

week intervention. We see them on a weekly

basis giving them advice and encouragement,

with tips on how to change their lifestyle.

Then we have catch ups at three, six and

nine months.

"We start by giving a little bit more advice

about how to make healthier choices, how to

manage portion sizes, how to start physical

activity - where to start and what to do.

Martin did not need too much help. We all

know what we need to do, and what we

should be doing. It is just that sometimes we

need a little push to walk a little bit more, to

choose brown pasta over white pasta, so it is

the little things here and there."

As far as exercise goes, Paulina says the

best exercise is the one that you enjoy.

She explained: "For Martin it happened to be

the gym - but he swims as well. We always

encourage people to do what they like to do

the most, because that way they will stick

with it."

Martin had been referred by his GP, but

there is also an option to refer yourself to take

part in the programme. Classes run at gyms

all over the city at all times of day.

PR boss Martin said that he did not use the

gym before, preferring to swim. But he

said: "I was beginning to put a little

extra weight on and my GP did a

diabetic review and said that my

HbA1c count was 58 which is on

the high side. She told me to start

taking responsibility for myself,

perhaps losing a bit of weight.

"The doctor referred me to

the Counterweight

programme about two

years ago, and I went

to the programme at

Ainslie Park and the

sessions were

thoroughly enjoyable.

"There was a group of ten of us and we all

became quite good chums. After a year of

doing this, I then had my review in March

2020 and my GP was thrilled that my HbA1c

had gone down to 44. It was exercise, diet and

lifestyle. Then of course we had lockdown and

when I went for my review in June this year I

was determined that my count would go

down to 42, which would mean I was no

longer in the Type 2 spectrum for diabetes.

Sadly, I had gone up to 48 and I was so


"But I am absolutely determined to do

it, now that the gyms are open and the

programme is running again."

During lockdown Martin walked

10,000 steps every day, but he is

convinced that dietary advice as well

as the encouragement and support

on the programme is key.

Get Moving with

Counterweight Group

Programme call

Edinburgh Leisure on

0131 458 2260

HIBS WOMEN’S Player of the Year, Leah Eddie,

capped off a tremendous season by winning the

first of hopefully many international caps during

Scotland’s friendly against Northern Ireland.

The 20-year-old started her career with Falkirk

and Central Ladies Academy, followed by spells

at both Celtic and Rangers, before signing for

Hibs two years ago. Her first season was

hampered by injury but last term she was a

stand-out performer as Hibs finished in fourth

place, behind the three full-time sides, Glasgow

City, Celtic and Rangers.

Leah told The Edinburgh Reporter: “I started

the first game of that season then tore my

anterior cruciate ligament 11 minutes into the

game, but moving to Hibs was the best decision

I’ve made in my football career so far because I

have progressed a lot there, and have loved

every minute of it.

“Last season, the results never reflected our

performances and we finished fourth, but we are

looking to finish higher this season. I think with

the players we have brought in and the players

we have got, we can definitely manage that and

certainly do better than we did last season. A

couple of the new players are still to come in and

a couple are here, and you can already see the

quality that they bring.”

Leah’s form with Hibs attracted the attention

of interim Scotland Coach, Stuart McLaren. She

said: “I was buzzing and couldn’t stop smiling

when I heard I had been called up. I couldn’t

even open my phone as there were so many

messages flooding in. It took me all that day and

the next to respond to them all. Just going away

and training with the top athletes that were

there was an experience that was up there.”

Leah’s selection is all the more commendable

given that she was one of the few non full-time

players in the squad. She paid tribute to

McLaren’s policy, adding: “It was good that he

recognised the players that were playing well at

their clubs and I think that he is looking into the

development of young players and bringing new

ones in. I’d definitely look to go full-time at some

point. I don’t know when it will be as I am really

happy at Hibs right now. I just finished my full

qualification in child care so I could go into

that alongside football. It’s something that

I can fall back on but going full-time is certainly

my ambition.”


Making a good fist of it

Under new management, rising star Robbie Graham,

gets set for his first pro boxing fight in Aberdeen

Martin P. McAdam


ROBBIE GRAHAM’S first professional

fight will take place at the Northern

Hotel in Aberdeen against an as yet

unnamed opponent.

The 26 year-old warehouse supervisor

from Craigmillar has boxed for nine years

as part of Team Misfits, but has now signed

with the British & Irish Boxing Authority

under Lee McAllister of Aberdeen

Assassins, who is to set him up with his

initial professional bout.

The young boxer is up at 5.30 every

morning, trains seven days a week, with

a gruelling schedule of running 40

miles, sparring three days a week and

working on strength and conditioning

on the other four.

He uses the facilities at J & L Boxing

and Fitness Club in Musselburgh

where his coaches Paul Barbour and

Jay Tuveri put him through his paces.

He said: "It will be my pro debut.

I've been working towards this for

about eight years now. Obviously the

match is still to be confirmed due to

Environmental Health who have to

okay it, as well as Covid restrictions

on social distancing. As far as I am

concerned though, the 28th August

is the big day, but there are no

names as yet.

"I started boxing at the age of

seven. I have won two Scottish,

a British and District titles which

were a stepping stone to get into

boxing professionally.

"I want to be successful. I always give

110%. I am the first in the gym and last

out and will travel up and down the

country for sparring. My goal is to be

the best I can be to achieve my dreams

in the professional world of boxing.”

Robbie’s principal coach, Paul, said:

"The things that stand out about Robbie are

his heart, determination and resilience.

He'd fight a bear with four arms if it meant

more ring time.

"I've been by his side several years now

and been with him through many ups and

downs. Boxing is more than just a sport

to him, it's given him a sense of purpose

and pride.

“I've watched him grow from a lad with

iron hands who liked to scrap, to someone

who eats, sleeps and breathes the sport he

loves. He'll travel half the country just to

get an extra training session in, he listens to

feedback from coaches, and actively works

on improving on a daily basis.

“The step up to pro is a dream Robbie

has chased for a couple of years now. He's

hard working and humble, he absolutely

deserves his opportunity, an opportunity

I know he's grabbed with both hands.

“I'm proud to be part of this exciting

journey he's on."

Robbie said: “I am about 72kgs just now

which means I am a bit over my target

weight. But a couple of road runs will sort

that out.

"My aim is to win the bout in August

and then challenge for bigger and better

after that."

Robbie has been working hard at keeping

fit, but also in dealing with the business

side of boxing by seeking out local

sponsors. He says that any contribution big

or small would make a huge difference.

Promoter and boxer Lee McAllister may

also fight an opponent in Aberdeen on the

same date.

The fight will be shown live on Fite TV

on 28 August.

Clan out of cold storage with Canadian signing


LOTHIANS-BASED ice hockey fans

should be aware that Glasgow Clan,

sponsored by Aspray Glasgow West,

have signed a new netminder.

He’s Shane Starrett (pictured),

a six-foot-five Canadian who is

the first signing by the ambitious

club’s new coach, Malcolm Cameron,

who positioned the highly-rated

netminder at the top of his

wanted list.

Starrett is also the first confirmed

name on the roster for the new

2021/22 season, which is scheduled

to start in November.

The player is teaming up again

with his former coach as they

previously worked together at ECHL

(East Coast Hockey League) side

Wichita Thunder. Starrett said he

had been looking at opportunities

to play overseas, so when coach

Cameron called he was excited.

The hot-stop said: “The coach and

I had a lot of success in Wichita,

reaching the play-offs and we had a

good relationship there.

“He’s a great coach and doesn’t

sugar coat things. He wants the best

from the team and to make sure

everything is done correctly.”

Starrett said: “I’m a tall goalie and

my athleticism is one area I pride

myself on. My ability to be able to

move quickly, because of my size

and reach across the net, is

something that’s a big aspect of me.”

Coach Cameron said: “Shane was

right at the top and I was surprised

he agreed to come over. Goalies

tend to wait until they’re older

before they make a move like that.

“Shane’s huge and because of his

size, he fills the goal so there’s not a

lot to shoot at when he’s there.

“For me, being able to sign

someone I was comfortable with,

someone I’ve had success with,

made it easy for me.”

“He’s a smart guy, someone

who likes new experiences plus we

have a really good relationship and

I definitely think it’s a good fit for

us both.”

Shane Starrett

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