Tuesday 6 December 2011: Bell Pulls - Tenement Living #2
After yesterday's emergency blip and knowing that today was going to be a long day of meetings as well I decided to grab a quick blip on the way to work.
Continuing the mini theme of Edinburgh tenements I thought I'd blip the bell pulls that are rapidly disappearing from the streets of Edinburgh.
When I first arrived in Edinburgh I was new to tenement living and I witnessed the final days of the bell pull. These buildings can have five or more floors and they were built before the days of electricity. No electric bell buttons back then.
The Georgians and Victorians built a series of wires and pulleys attached to little bell pulls down at street level. Pulling one of these rang a bell up in the hall of the flat many floors above.
Of course such things became redundant long ago. But not so long ago as you might think.
18 years ago I pulled that big MacLeod bell pull shown above. I had gone round to view the flat as a potential purchase and was surprised to see that there was no "normal" electric buzzer and microphone as per a modern door entry system. There was just a big Georgian bell pull.
When I walked past to blip it today I saw that it was now covered in cobwebs. No longer used as there was a modern door entry buzzer installed just beside it.
Are there any of these left working in Edinburgh today?
Who knows but every year there are fewer left and soon they will all be gone.