49 thoughts on “OLD SCOTLAND”

  1. The fourth picture is, of course, Edinburgh ‘the foot of the Bridges’ as we called it, with Register House, Wellington’s statue in front of, on the left and the North British Hotel and the old GPO to the right. Many are the times I would be on a tram or bus turning right to go ‘up the Bridges’ to visit my maternal granny who lived near The Surgeons’ Hall and the old Empire Theatre. She lived for over 60 years in the same tenement, which, I found out only quite recently, had been built in 18th century Georgian times for merchants and their families! As you can imagine it was kind of decrepit when I used to visit and she had only a ‘room and kitchen’, but they have been cleaned up and modernised in recent years, I believe. Built to last. This picture is a bit before my time, early 1930’s? My parents would have been ‘courting’ or ‘stepping out’ as they used to say. I love the charabanc in the foreground. A bit draughty in the winter, though!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The cars certainly look pretty old.

      Thanks for the nice wee tale aboot yer granny’s wee hoose.

      These tenements were built to last. I think one of the most awful things that they did in the centre of Dundee was rip the Overgate down, and replace it with that dreadful concrete monstrosity which lasted only a few decades and looked awful. These old buildings almost certainly could have been renovated and made a fabulous centre to our town. The councils in these days were all about making money for the councillors and their concrete companies!

      Liked by 1 person

        1. It was madness, Tree. But some BigWig on the council had a mate that had a cement/concrete company so they built this:

          (even the artwork is concrete.)

          to replace this



    1. Aye, Cairnallochy, an there’s a pub just up from there on the left where I remember you could get a pint of Light for 10p when everywhere else in toon was charging 15. The pub also did “pensioners specials” so the place was always full of old codgers* playing dominoes and sipping whisky who enjoyed the privilege of getting a free glass of beer if they bought a double.

      *there was some oap/pensioners adapted housing just beyond that big building in the middle of the road.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. It’s High Street, isn’t it? I can just make out the first place on the pedestrian signpost on the left – it’s Taylor Building (in the Uni). A street or so uphill, the name ends in “ACE”, so I guess that’d be Thom’s Place and framed by the trees is the Old Town House of Aberdeen. I note that the nearest car is an L plate (1972 reg) Vauxhall Viva and that the old guy beside it has wellies with his trousers tucked into them and a saft hat on – probably some fairmer chiel who’s just been into what looks like a branch of the Clydesdale Bank on the other side of the street. The number of younger people in the pic would indeed tend to confirm that it’s near the Uni. Every picture tells a story – or several.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. The first photo is, I am pretty sure, the Hilltown in Dundee, but it’s almost unrecognizable – I can match only the first two buildings on the left, really – with one chimney stack taken down and replaced with a tiny dormer window. The closest is the Dundee Pie Shop. Link to a Google maps photo. https://goo.gl/5xwiJv

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      1. Jeez, I didn’t spot that, andimac! What a twit I am sometimes. Hey, but I did work out what building that was – all thanks not to my vast erudition, nor to my incomparable googling skills, but to the fact I live just round the corner. Actually, I’m surprised the Pie Shop is still there – that building is pretty much falling to bits.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Interesting to see the Hilltown with all the varied shops and people shopping locally. The Co-Op is the building just past the Pie shop. The population then was many times what it is now, all the backlands are no more. My Grandparents lived in Rosebank Street and that is a shadow of it’s self. I doubt if people realise that a Cinema was in that street.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Yes, the complex I’m in is at the top of Rosebank Street and backs onto the Hilltown. A taxi driver (a rather ancient taxi driver) once told me that he’d grown up on Rosebank Street too, and where I live now used to be a lemonade bottling works, with a yard where there is an open green area now where their delivery carts and the stables for the horses were. The local laddies, he told me, used to climb over the wall at the weekends to nick empty unwashed bottles, take them to the shop and get the deposit money back on them, which they would then use to go to the cinema – probably the one Marcia just told us about!

          Of course, he could just have been spinning me some old taxi driver’s tale.

          Liked by 1 person

      1. It certainly has, Tris. That stretch is particularly dilapidated. One of the features of Dundee that people elsewhere may not know about is that the city has many old sandstone tenements and other buildings with shoogly-looking chimney stacks, and other bits of unsound masonry, also blocked gutters and so on – the giveaway sign of neglect and deterioration is that there will almost certainly be buddleia growing there. Buddleia really seems to thrive in Dundee’s microclimate. There’s a lot more of it up above than there is down at ground level, as far as I can tell.

        Liked by 2 people

          1. That place is a disgrace, isn’t it, Marcia – it’s got great green stains of algae down the walls too where the drainpipes are blocked and overflowing. Last I saw it was being used by one of those places where younger straight people go to perform courtship rituals to modern dance music, but no one seems to be looking after the building itself. Fine red sandstone masonry too.

            Liked by 1 person

        1. Ha ha …true. I’ve got some growing out of walls in the garden. The thing is that, for a weed, it is incredibly beautiful and the scent is fantastic.

          But I do worry about the chimney stacks. On at least two occasions we’ve found smashed chimney’s on the ground. If one of them fell on you, you’d be a gonner!


  3. Tris, the Glesca pic – the tram is on Argyle Street passing the bottom of Buchanan Street to its left. The street behind it on its left is Mitchell Street. As it’s a No 29, it would have been running from Maryhill to either Glasgow Cross or Tollcross. Going by the wee Commer(?) van and people’s garb I’d date it to late 1940s/early 1950s. The H Samuel time would appear to be 1.25 pm.

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    1. That is a great piece by the Rev. Stu – I’d found it by myself already, but you do us all a service by drawing everyone’ s attention to it, Tris. I haven’t done it yet, but I’m intending to put a list of those names he identified somewhere I will actually remember, so I can respond appropriately when one of them makes the mistake of crossing my verbal path. The problem these is remembering where I put things. Anything.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. He advised on Twitter that he was taking it down. SiU’s lawyers have been on to him, and he is doing some further checking with his own legal advisers before he puts it back up.

        I reckon he should be ok. The stuff was there open on line, not encrypted, not hidden.. It was there for anyone to see.


  4. Fascinating pictures and stories everybody!

    Not a location shot, but an interesting old photograph I ran onto yesterday. The old gentleman has an Irish connection. Maybe a familiar picture in the UK, but I’d never seen it.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I think that many of the early photographs of famous people taken at the advent of photography in about 1840 are interesting. Napoleon (who was born the same year) died relatively young and was never photographed.

        The first president ever photographed (in 1843, 14 years after he left office) was John Quincy Adams, the sixth president. He was the son of John Adams, the prominent revolutionary, signer of the Declaration, and second president.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Look up Admiral Thomas Cochrane Danny. He’s the guy who C S Forester based the character of Hornblower on, and more recently, Patrick O’Brian’s Jack Aubrey. Napoleon called him Les Loup des Mers.
          Strangely enough, those characters were both English rather than the original Scots. There is an early photo of him as an old man; yet the eyes…

          Liked by 2 people

      2. That man… Called his soldiers, who won him his victories, the scum of the earth. Asked about being born in Ireland, replied that being born in a stable did not make one a horse.

        A man of his time, like the modern British aristocracy…

        Liked by 2 people

    1. Now I know what an ellipsis is! Thanks Conan.

      I found quite a bit of material on Admiral Cochrane…….and a couple of very interesting old pictures. I must read more about him.
      I see that Wellington was to the manor born. His father an Earl and his mother was the daughter of a Viscount. Not exactly a man of the people (or his own soldiers) it seems.

      The old pictures are fascinating. I found this group of pictures of veterans of Napoleon’s Grande Armee, which was taken in 1858:

      I’ve read that there are maybe as many as 100 photographs (with verified provenance) of soldiers who fought with Washington in the revolution. Some of these are familiar pictures:


      This includes a few youngsters who witnessed Lord Cornwallis’ surrender of the British army at Yorktown (Virginia) in 1781. But being in a boat on the Delaware River with Washington on Christmas night of 1776 to successfully attack the Hessian British at Trenton (New Jersey) was another matter.

      There was a guy named Conrad Heyer who is said to be the earliest born person ever photographed (born 1749, photographed 1852) and ALSO the only man who crossed the Delaware with Washington to have been photographed. Both claims have been questioned. A man named Adams was photographed and he said he was born in 1745. And there is some scholarship which is said to show that while Heyer was in Washington’s army for a year, his enlistment may have been up before Christmas of 1776.

      I prefer to think he was on the river with Washington. Anyway, he’s an interesting looking character and the picture is historic.

      Liked by 1 person

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