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Granton Archive Project:
Spring 2024 Update

The weekly Tuesday drop-in Archive sessions have attracted artists, local community members, rare booksellers, historians, community activists, community workers, retired people, men and women, and others to look at, appreciate, research and discuss the history of Granton and  North Edinburgh.

Here is an example of a report on our drop-in session held on 16 April 2024: 

We  were very pleased with our new drop-in sessions poster (all-weather) printed and delivered by @outofhandscotland. Today's drop-in session was busy with one of our invaluable volunteers Alan telling me why he started with us - "I had hoped for years that there would be an accessible place for local history, somewhere that's not a museum, but which relates directly to the area in which I have lived for 52 years. I was looking for somewhere people can bring things from their own family and history to add to the archive, or if they're making a project, they can look into not just Mary Queen of Scots, but the Triangle Centre or the Razzle Dazzle Arts Group that both used to be active here. I think it's coming together... "

We welcomed Svetlana and Marta, both artists who're making work in the area and had a good rummage through our fascinating photos and newspapers. Anna P, who translated the Walking Tour (I was able to give both Polish speakers a copy in their own language), came along to say hello in person and meet us all, and local community worker Barrie had a query about a local sculpture (anyone know who made the reclining sailor tucked away behind Lower Granton Road?) which he was curious about. 

Oh, and we did a spot of gardening too, to smarten the place up for our visitors.

(funded by One City Trust)


27 March 2024 - Meeting up with a group of socially isolated people from Birnie’s Court (Muirhouse) and then making a presentation for them (by the Development Worker and a volunteer) was a notable achievement.

7 participants took part in addition to Leader Barrie Simcock , Tamsin Grainger and Marianne Forsyth (no photographs were taken)

(funded by One City Trust)

29 March 2024: Granton Youth visit

We were pleased to host Granton Youth and artist Dominika Jackowska who were working on an Escape Game and wanted to look at our photographs and newspapers to find material they could use. They were keen to see the newspapers from the month and year of their birthday. 

The Lab Youth Project Manager had made the initial request to visit because she knew the GAP from her art workshops connection. The group 

was guided by the Development Worker and looked around the Archive to find the answers to a quiz on the Granton area. Then they looked through photos and the NEN newspapers, especially captivated by the editions which were from the year and month of their birth.

(funded by One City Trust)


Friday 4th August 2023 - Mixed Media Printing and Painting Workshop

As part of the ‘Filling the GAP: Granton Archive Project’ granton:hub hosted an art workshop with artist Beth Cockerline, aimed at children in celebration of Granton, its rich history and people. Using a range of beautiful images and words from the archive,  children were taught a printing method and use collage and paint to bring the images to life in your own unique colours and vision.

(co-funded by granton:hub and Edinburgh Council)

11th August 2023: Granton on Tiles – photo transfer workshop

As part of the ‘Filling the GAP: Granton Archive Project’ artist Marta Adamowicz offered an art session to show youngsters, using the archive, a creative method of photo transfer an image onto ceramic tiles. For this purpose the groups used copies of photos from the Granton Archive which the artist consulted beforehand with support of the development worker.

(co-funded by granton:hub and One City Trust)

20 August 2023: stop animation workshops for adults and children with local Polish-born artist Dominika Jackowska resulted in lively films now added to our YouTube channel

Reference: adult and youngsters YouTube videos uploaded here and

(workshop funded by Edinburgh Creative Communities Hub, artist visited archive to prepare for the event, funded by One City trust)

18-20 April 2024: We hosted delegates for Edinburgh College of Art’s ‘Heritage on the Edge’ 3-day event, with representatives from Spanish, French and Edinburgh universities in addition to Edinburgh World Heritage Trust and the National Galleries of Scotland.  (See reference here and here

Activities involved two heritage walks, presentations, workshops for all ages, visits to local organisations (Granton Station), and a travelling public consultation exhibition. ECA also took part in the RFYC Discover Sailing 2024 Open Day (5/5/2023) and the North Edinburgh Community festival (11/5/2024) to extend their consultations. 

On 20 April, members of the community were invited to state what they liked about the Granton area and feedback was collated for future reference by the University. This is a phase 2 of a European funded project for which granton:hub was a partner

(co-funded by Edinburgh College of Art and granton:hub)


When it came to translating the Walking Tour into Polish, this meant that we had already made contact with sectors of that local community and so there was a sense of joining people up and of networking, thereby multiplying our reach. 

The same artist was then engaged by Granton Youth and, as she knew about GAP, she brought a group to use it for research for their project. 

This is a great example of a good community working-model in practice, and indicates how likely it is that on-going funding will attract more such high quality engagement. (City-wide networking)

(funded by One City Trust)

Monday 18 December 2023: The schools’ workshops enabled GAP to tell a large number of children and their teachers about the Archive, including those with special educational needs (ADHD etc) and from many cultural backgrounds.

The visit was organised with Lisa Kapur, City of Edinburgh Council and 2 schools were involved: Granton Primary School (24 pupils plus 1 teacher) and St David’s Primary School (approx. 25 pupils plus teacher) 

Using the Archive and other internet sources, research was carried out and a PowerPoint created and presented at both schools.


Image above: Schools workshop December 2023 

(funded by One City Trust)


30 April 2024: The Miniature Granton in Clay workshop was a success with positive feedback. The selected artist, Natasha Phoenix visited the Archive in advance and met the Development Worker. After the session, the clay results away for firing and smartening up. They were delivered back to the Granton:hub for collection by the participants. 

One building from each person remained in the Archive whilst other clay figures were taken home.

(co-funded by  Edinburgh Council Creative Communities Chest and One City Trust)

Heritage walks, supported by the archive

Walks with Willie Black (Trustee and Chair of the History Hub) and Kenneth Williamson  (local transport history expert) were popular and very well attended, highlighting the new William Speirs Bruce Way. A future workshop is planned to share the significance of this historic character in the context of Granton’s heritage. We are hoping to involve the University of Edinburgh Science and Technology group.


Kenneth Williamson in discussion with walking tour participants visiting the archive after their walk (20 April 2024)

(funded by One City Trust)

A new Granton heritage mural was erected on the boundary of the Granton Walled Garden and a public event (bike ride) has now taken place to publicise it (May 2024). THis was another great example of cooperation, collaboration and exchange between local heritage groups. 

The installation of the mural with artist Eve Murray (April 2024) location: Granton Castle Walled Garden. Work commissioned by granton:hub

(funded by Sustrans, the artist consulted the archive with support of the Development Worker, funded by One City Trust)


In addition, here is an overview of other activities in which the Development Worker and members of granton:hub took part:

Mounting GAP exhibitions at the North Edinburgh Film Festival (West Pilton Neighbourhood Centre February 2024) and taking part in the North Edinburgh Festival (West Pilton Neighbourhood Centre May 2024) allowed us to share the Archive with a great many and diverse types of people. We also hosted the WASPS Arts Worker, Heather Marshall, who used the Archive to source material for her Heritage Exhibition (April 2024).

(funded by One City Trust)


Image above: North Edinburgh Festival May 2024

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