Tag Archives: firth

2012 (Part 2)

Kia Ora Fellow Gallopers,

Another year’s come and gone – a year that was packed with events ranging from the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee to the London Olympics to the US Presidential election. The aftershocks of the economic crisis continued to rock the world economies and the world was to have ended this year.

While being a silent spectator to the atrocities that one fellow human inflicts on another, this beautiful planet that we call Home sent out very clear signals to us, by way of storms and super storms,  that we will have to bear the consequences of our bad and reckless stewardship of her.

Following on from yesterday’s post – 2012 (Part 1) – here are the rest of our most highly rated* images from the past 12 months. Hope you enjoy these images as much as I enjoyed making them:

July 2012:

Jul01

Jul02

Jul03

Jul04

August 2012:

Aug01

Aug02

Aug03

September 2012:

Sep01

Sep02

Sep03

October 2012:

Oct01

Oct02

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Oct04

November 2012:

Nov01

Nov02

Nov03

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December 2012:

Dec01

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Dec04

As we all ‘Gangnam Style’ our way into the Year of the Snake, here’s hoping that it’ll be a good one…

Thank You so much for your support in 2012. We’ve loved having you around in Black Stallion Country.

See you all in 2013.

Gallop Free.

BSP Logo

* – All the images in this post were showcased on our Facebook Page as part of our ‘Picture of the Day’ feature and were highly rated by the most important and valued viewer of all – You.

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Red Arrows over Leith Harbour

Hello Fellow Gallopers,

The third annual Armed Forces Day celebrations were held on the 25th of June, 2011 in the capital city of Scotland.

To mark this event, the Red Arrows (the aerobatics team of the Royal Air Force) blazed into Edinburgh and filled the dull grey evening sky with hues of red, white and blue.

After a hiatus of 23 years, the residents of Edinburgh were treated to a 25 minute aerial display over Leith Harbour and the Firth of Forth. The display was visible from various vantage points – one of them being Calton Hill from where these images were taken.

To view all the images in this set, kindly click the link below:

http://koshy.smugmug.com/Events/Red-Arrows-Leith-Harbour/17880756_csfr5T#P-1-10

Till next time, take care and gallop free.

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Water of Leith Walkway Stage 3 – Murrayfield to Dean Village

Hello Fellow Gallopers,

This section of the walk along the Water of Leith passes through the heart of the city and starts in the Murrayfield Rugby Grounds and passes through Roseburn Park, the Bells Mills area and ends in the Dean Village.

Murrayfield Grounds is named after Archibald Murray, who bought the ground from the Nisbets of Dean in 1734. The Scottish Rugby Union acquired the ground from the Edinburgh Polo Club and the international stadium was built after the First World War (the stadium has been altered and enlarged since). While excavating the ground, a coffin containing the skeleton of a soldier and his musket were found – possibly one of Cromwell’s troops who encamped here.

Roseburn Park takes its name from a burn draining into Corstorphine Loch. The loch was originally a glacial lake, giving rise to a large area of marshland, which was finally drained in the 17th Century. The Walkway continues via Roseburn Cliff and passes under the Coltbridge Viaduct.

As one enters the Bells Mills Area, the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art is accessible over a footbridge. Originally John Watson’s School, the premises were designed in 1825 by William Burn for the maintenance and education of destitute children. The gallery opened in 1984. Donaldson’s School for the Deaf, designed by W H Playfair in 1841 is out of sight on the right bank. A hotel stands on the site of the ancient Bell’s Mills, the last working mill to draw its power from the river, which blew up in 1971. The granary, mill house and cobble lane survive. Belford Bridge (1887) marks the start of the Dean Bank footpath.

Dean Village: The walkway passes below the Dean Cemetery that occupies the grounds of Dean House, the 17th century home of the Nisbets. Many famous Edinburgh citizens are buried here, including Lord Cockburn, W.H.Playfair and Dr.Elsie Inglis. The village itself is sited in a steep sided gorge and was the original crossing point for travellers proceeding to Queensferry and the North. Once known as the Village of the Water of Leith, mills were present in the 12th Century and the village became the centre for flour milling under the Baxters, who owned mills and granaries and supplied Edinburgh with flour until steam milling came to Leith in the 19th Century. Some interesting features along this part of the walk are:

  • Old Dean Bridge – a carved stone in the wall nearby shows the symbols of the Baxters’ trade – crossed peels (the wooden shovels used to move loaves into and out of the oven) – with the much worn date 1643.
  • Dean Bridge – designed by Thomas Telford and opened in 1832, built largely by the initiative of Provost John Learmouth who wished to develop his lands on the west side of the gorge. The bridge towers 32 metres (106 feet) above the river.
  • St.Bernard’s Well was discovered, according to tradition, by three Heriot’s School boys while fishing in the river in 1760. In 1789 the present circular Roman temple structure was added, with Hygeia, the Goddess of Health, at the centre. The well became popular because of the supposed health-giving properties of its water, but recent analysis shows it to be unfit for drinking. A plaque facing the river acknowledges the restoration of the well and its presentation to the City by William Nelson, the publisher, in 1888.

To see all the images* in this set, please click the link below:

http://koshy.smugmug.com/Places/Water-of-Leith-Walk-Stage-3/12476754_JRZph#894137295_TCAdN

http://koshy.smugmug.com/Places/Water-of-Leith-Walk-Stage-3-1/12467448_YdRgQ#P-1-10

Please do join me next time for Stage 4 and the final stage of the journey which will start in Stockbridge and pass through Canonmills, Bonnington and finally end in Leith where the river flows out to sea via the Firth of Forth.

Till next time, take care and gallop free.

* – images taken with the Canon 50D.

Ride with the Black Stallion: www.igallopfree.com

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Water of Leith Walkway Stage 1 – Balerno to Juniper Green

Hello Fellow Gallopers,

Took a few days off to walk the Water of Leith Walkway to experience and discover the natural beauty and wildlife that this waterway sustains as it flows from the Pentland Hills and meanders through the heart of the capital city of Scotland (Edinburgh) before emptying itself into the Firth of Forth at Leith. The river itself is 35kms (25 miles long) and rises in the Colzium Springs in the Pentland Hills.

The 12 3/4 mile walkway starts in Balerno and follows the path of the old Balerno Branch railway line to Slateford; it then runs parallel to the river all the way to Leith. The main areas of the city that the river passes in this stage are Balerno, Currie and Juniper Green.

Balerno is the last of a chain of villages linked by the river, which skirts the Northern slopes of the Pentland Hills. Originally a farming community, it expanded into paper-making and flax milling around 1800. The Balerno Branch Railway was opened in 1874, principally to service the paper mills but also to carry passengers. The railway line now serves as a level Walkway from Balerno just over fives miles to Slateford. Former mills of the area include the Waulkmill of Ballernoch. Dating from 1376, it became a distillery in 1845 and a piggery in recent memory. The Balerno Paper Mill dates from 1788; it became a glue works in 1882 and finally a tannery.

Currie was an ancient settlement, the name being derived from the Celtic “Curagh” meaning hollow or glen. The village was the centre of a large parish, mainly farmland, ranging from the crest of the Pentlands in the south down to the Gogar Burn in the north. The site of Currie Kirk has housed a church for over 1000 years. In 1296 it was dedicated to St.Kentigern and the present church was built in 1785 at a cost of £433. Kinleith Mill was the largest mill on this section of the river and the biggest employer, with 389 workers at its peak, leaving a massive gap in the community, especially in Currie, when it closed in 1966.

Juniper Green was first mentioned as a village in 1707 and may take its name from the juniper bushes growing on the Pentland slopes. The area was dominated by the Woodhall Estate which included Woodhall Paper Board Mill (a paper mill dating from 1749) and Inglis or Woodhall Grain Mill which worked at drying grain under electric power until 2003, being the last working mill on the river to be then demolished to create housing. Below the City Bypass, one will see the Upper Spylaw Mill, which was one of Scotland’s earliest paper mills (1682) and later made snuff (1765). It had a colourful history and for a time (c.1776) the top floor was an inn frequented by smugglers. The mill became a dairy and recently a riding school.

To see all the images* in this set, please click the link below:

http://koshy.smugmug.com/Places/Water-of-Leith-Walkway-Stage1/12331733_mBrb2#880747950_uB4Ri

Please do join me next time for Stage 2 of the journey which will start at Colinton and pass through Slateford and end in Saughton.

Till next time, take care and gallop free.

* – images taken with the Canon 50D.

Ride with the Black Stallion: www.igallopfree.com

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