Monday 23 April 2012: Leith #9 - The Shore
The Shore in Leith is one of my favourite spots in Edinburgh. It links the Water of Leith with Leith Docks.
The existence of a port in the estuary of the Water of Leith is implied, by the charter of Holyrood Abbey, as early as 1128. By 1398, Edinburgh, which owned the port but not the adjoining land, received permission to enlarge the port. It may have been at this time when the Shore acquired the form it still retains, of a combined street and quay. The first bridge must have been built around this time as well.
It used to be the original Port of Leith, and up to 1826 it was the principal quay for loading and discharging vessels, especially coasters. In the late 1700s, a pier was built to the north. As described on a notice board erected by the City of Edinburgh District Council, Forth Ports Authority and the Water of Leith Conservation Trust:
"Tall masted sailing ships berthed at the Shore, while scores of crewmen loaded fish, coal, grain and hides for export to Northern Europe and the Mediterranean. Ships returned with wine, fruit, spices and cloth.
As ships grew too large for this shallow river mouth the harbour was moved north but the buildings on the Shore still show evidence of the old port."
Once a seedy area with a bad reputation for drug dealing, it is now a centre for a range of nice pubs and restaurants.
Today it was a crazy weather day with intervals of rain and sunshine. When I left the flat to take my pictures, it was raining, when I arrived to the Shore, it stopped raining and the sun came out again as I was returning home. On my way home I bumped into my friend and fellow Blipper CanCarrier and we went for a cup of tea and a wee blether. As we were seating outside the Leith Walk Cafe, having our cuppa, it stared pissing down again. Back home, I had to finish the translation for my friend, so I was pretty much homebound.
Back to work tomorow :(
Thanks very much for all your nice comments. I hope you all had a great start of the week! And Happy St. George's Day to everyone! :)