Simpson

Blogging, colour, urban

Another from Warriston Cemetry. This family name is well known and lives on with generations of Edinburgers. Sir James Young Simpson (1811 – 1870), or at least his surname, is best known for it’s association with Edinburgh’s principal maternity hospital. This tulip, I think – I’m not very good with flowers, almost radiated light from it’s centre, and sat within the monument that marks Simpson’s grave.

Simpson                       1/250, f/11, ISO160.

Simpson was a pioneer in the use of choloform in obstetric anaesthesia and at a time before the NHS would provide support to the poor. However even as a well to do Baronet and Obstetrician his family were not immune to the harshness of the age. The grave shows three of his children dying at ages 2, 3 and 15 years.

When Simpson died, it is reported that two thousand mourners followed the cortege, and 50,000 people lined the streets of Edinburgh.

Adam Black

colour, urban

These old cemetries are the resting palce for the entire social spectrum from a traceless mother with no name and a simple stone, through to this family, whose legacy appears in substantial stonework, the public record and in the history books. In this case, quite literally in ‘history’ books.

adam black1/200, f/5.0, ISO160

Adam Black created a publishing firm A&C Black (now part of Bloomsbury), that in his lifetime published three editions of the Encyclopedia Britannica and Sir Walter Scott’s Waverley Novels. He was a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, twice served as Lord Provost of the city and was it’s MP for nine years. It’s little wonder his grave is marked with somewhat more panache than the unknown mother. But his legacy is perhaps not the most significant of Warriston’s residents. More about who that is in a couple of days.

 

Warriston Cemetry

black and white, Blogging, Uncategorized, urban

Tucked between the Water of Leith and Ferry Road is Warriston Cemetry. It is an overgrown cemetry with many ruinous stones and monuments. This was an unusual stone, simply saying “MOTHER” on a plain cross. It long ago had fallen off it’s plinth and is now embedded in the undergrowth, and there were no other clues of who mother was.

Warriston one1/250, f/5.0, ISO160

Edinburgh has a few overgrown cemetries. A number of cemetries were created under private ownership in the 19th Century. Many of these fell into disrepair during the 70’s and 80’s – all to be compulrsory purchased by the city council in the 90’s.

Allowing these sites and memorials to become so dilapidated is disrespectul, however I find them uniquely contemplative spaces.

Grey tower

colour, urban

The final photo from a walk round the Gyle busines park. I don’t know which building this is. Edinburgh is not a city of tall buildings, so you need to get close to the ground to get any sense of presence from the buildings. I think the guests of the local budget hotel thought I was mad, lying on the ground taking the picture of an office stairwell!

gray tower1/100, f/10, ISO160

St. Vigeans Church

Blogging, colour

Sitting on top of it’s grassy knoll, close to the Brothick Burn, St Vigeans Church has always been for me the epitome of a red sandstone building.

st vigeansIn this image, I’ve combined two exposures – 1/100 & 1/400, f/10, ISO160. At 1/100 the sky was white and at 1/400 the building was looking like dark shadow.

Someday I’d like to be there towards sunset on a clear day. The church tower faces west and the hue of the sandstone looks amazing against a darkening blue sky.

 

Edinburgh Skyline – 4

Blogging, colour, urban

The final installment. Altogether a greyer affair. This is a merged image of three exposures in Advocate’s Close. High cloud had come in, washing out the blue sky, causing the grey of the harling (a Scottish term for the exterior surfacing treatment) to dominate. The sandstone of the building to the right, tried to get in on the act, but even it’s colour looked supressed.

Edinburgh Skylines (5 of 5)(A merge of three exposures 1/125, 1/30 and 1/8, all at f/8)