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The Piazzi Blog

10th November 2017

North Berwick Lifeboat Station

North Berwick Lifeboat Station

North Berwick received a lifeboat in October 1860. Gifted to the town by Messrs. Jaffray & Son of London, along with a lifeboat carriage and equipment, the Town Council provided the site for the lifeboat shed at the end of Shore Street now Victoria Road. Despite continuous rain on the day of the launch, the entire community turned out and lined the streets. Four horses bedecked with flowers, were harnessed to the four wheeled lifeboat carriage which was hauled from the shed in Shore Street, along Back Street now Forth Street as far as the West Links, before making a complete circuit of the burgh via the High Street and Quadrant to the east beach where the launch of the ‘Caroline’ took place. The lifeboat was replaced by ‘Caroline II in 1865. image credit Wikimedia Commons

3rd November 2017

HMS C38

HMS C38

The Grand Fleet consisting of one hundred and fourteen vessels of the Royal Navy anchored between Queensferry and Granton in July 1908. Commanded by Vice-admiral Sir F.C.B. Bridgeman, the fleet consisted of battleships, cruisers, gunboats and submarines. The submarines arrived at Granton from Dover, the longest non-stop run by submarines at that time. image credit Wikimedia Commons

26th October 2017

The launch of The Sightseers a new Observers walk created by artist James N Hutchinson with the Lothian Blind Ramblers group and RNIB will take place on 27th October at Collective on the Calton Hill. Inspired by the stories of Thomas Henderson (1789-1844) and Thomas Anderson (1853-1932), both astronomers who made significant discoveries despite having visual impairments, The Sightseers explores what it means to observe when sight isn’t the primary sense and how this could enable us to reimagine or rediscover a place. The Observers Walk was produced through discussion and walks with Lothian Blind Ramblers and recorded live on Calton Hill by actors Eliza Langland and Simon Tait. Refreshments will be provided. The walk will be available to download from Collective’s website on 27 October 2017, we advise that visually impaired people should be guided when doing the walk, members of the team at Collective are trained guides please contact mail@collectivegallery.net to arrange. Observers' Walks is a series of downloadable audio guides commissioned by Collective and created by artists specifically to be listened to on Calton Hill.

22nd October 2017

David H Muir

David H Muir

The photograph shows Sgt David H. Muir of the Edinburgh City Artillery Volunteers in 1903. Formed in 1860, the gunners used the Argyle Battery at Edinburgh Castle for drill. Target practice was carried out at Leith Fort. Carbine practice was carried out at Hunter’s Bog in the Queen’s Park

15th October 2017

Art image

The Social Reproduction of Feminist Art History

A discussion and debate marking the launch of two publications: Feminism and Art History Now, edited by Victoria Horne and Lara Perry, and a special issue of Third Text focussing on 'Social Reproduction and Art', edited by Angela Dimitrakaki and Kirsten Lloyd. The debate will be held at Edinburgh College of Art, Evolution House, 5th Floor, 8 West Port, Edinburgh EH1 2L on 25 October 2017 from 6—8pm The Social Reproduction of Feminist Art History is co-hosted by Collective and the School of History of Art at The University of Edinburgh. Established in 2017, this research partnership convenes and supports initiatives that centre on art’s intersections with social reproduction and feminist thought.

8th October 2017

Mounted Police Arriving

Mounted Police Arriving

Guillermo Carnero’s ‘A Residence Above the Clouds’ was well received by the audience at the Filmhouse in Lothian Road last Saturday. Dr Bruce Vickery of the Edinburgh Astronomical Society was present at the Scottish premiere. The event to mark World Animal Day at the Omni Centre, Greenside Row, Leith Street on Wednesday was also well attended. Susan Boyle the world famous singer turned up to support the event. Deidre Brock MP, the Councillor for the area gave a very good speech, which was quoted in the ‘Edinburgh Evening News’. A video of the ceremony can be seen on Edinburgh Evening News Facebook. The meal provided by Tony Macaroni’s was excellent. The photograph shows the arrival of the horses from the mounted police who travelled up specially from Ayrshire for the event.

1st October 2017

Directed by Guillermo Carnero, ‘A Residence Above the Clouds’ tells the story of Professor Charles Piazzi Smyth’s expedition to Tenerife in 1856. The film will be shown during the Edinburgh /Spanish Film Festival at the Filmhouse, Lothian Road at 11.00 am on October 7th. The skies of Edinburgh are too murky to view the heavens. Charles Piazzi Smyth, Astronomer Royal for Scotland, writer, artist and polymath decides to take state of the art telescopes and photographic equipment, carrying them 10,000ft above the clouds of Tenerife. This story of a remarkable man is revealed through eyes of students from the School of Physics and Astronomy (Edinburgh University) and Dr Bruce Vickery of the Edinburgh Astronomical Society.

1st October 2017

Transit House

Transit House

Built in 1814, this building known as the transit house stood on the west side of the observatory compound. The building contained a small transit telescope and a clock. The clock which stood in the window was known as the ‘Politician’s Clock’ as it had a face at the front and a face at the rear, allowing mariners and the people of the town to check their chronometers and watches. Although a large transit telescope was set up in the observatory in 1831, the clock in the window continued to supply the time. Although it was hit by lightning, the clock survived and was sent to James Ritchie & Son to be repaired. The clock was returned to the transit house window in 1869.

27th September 2017

Giraffes

Giraffe Sculptures

Deidre Brock MP for Edinburgh and North Leith will be attending the ceremony to mark World Animal Day which will take place at the Giraffe Sculptures, Omni Centre, Greenside Row, Leith Street on Wednesday 4th October at one o’clock. Animal lovers wishing to attend with their pets should gather at the Giraffe Sculptures at 12.45 pm. Music for the event will be provided by a band from South Africa.

20th September 2017

Sundial cannon

Sundial Cannon

A sundial cannon gun consists of a sundial incorporating a cannon. The fuse is sparked off when the rays of the sun shine through a lens, firing the cannon set up on a north-south axis at noon. Used by European royalty during the 18th century, the cannons ranged in size from large to small depending on the location. The household variety was used in estates to signal the time for the midday meal, while the larger models were set up in public parks to signal noon. Buinessman John Hewat spotted a sundial cannon firing in the Palais Royal Gardens in 1846 during a business trip to Paris. The experience gave him the idea of setting up a time gun in Edinburgh. image credit Wikimedia Commons

18th September 2017

The Four Flyers

The Four Flyers

SS Kronprinz Wilhelm arrived in the Firth of Forth in September 1901. Built for the Norddeutscher Lloyd in 1901, the passenger liner was named after Crown Prince Wilhelm. During the First World War she served as auxiliary warship in the Imperial German Navy before being interned in the United States after running out of supplies. When the U.S. entered the war, she was seized and served as troop transport until she was decommissioned and turned over to the United States Shipping Board, remaining in service until she was scrapped in 1923.

17th September 2017

Clorinde

Clorinde

The steam corvette Loret followed by the steam frigate Clorinde which had been employed on fishery protection duty, arrived in the Firth of Forth in August 1869. Built between 1843 and 1845 the Clorinde was re-fitted with a 804-shp steam engine and a retractable propeller in Cherbourg, before being re-launched in May 1857. In 1868, the steam frigate was sent to Cadiz to protect French interests during the Glorious Revolution. image credit Wikimedia Commons

11th September 2017

The Last Hour

The Last Hour

Curated by Timothea Armour with new work by Lloyd and Wilson ‘The Last Hour!’ is a new project curated by Timothea Armour that considers the contemporary state, and potential future, of the public house. Taking its title from a chapter of ‘The Pub and the People, a Mass Observation’ study from 1938, which examined the pub as a British institution, ‘The Last Hour!’ seeks to use some of the same research techniques to examine the pub of today. A new newspaper ‘The Last Hour!’ will be distributed to pubs within a mile of Collective, while a series of events will discuss questions around the ownership and role of the pub. In the windows of Collective’s soon-to-be-decommissioned temporary gallery, Toby Lloyd and Andrew Wilson will create a new installation in the form of an expanded mind-map which echoes the appearance of a closed pub. The events programme will culminate with the screening of ‘Public House’ by Sarah Turner, a cinematic portrait of the London pub ‘The Ivy House’, and the local people who saved it from closure and redevelopment into flats. 'The Last Hour' will run at the Collective from 22nd September until November 5th redevelopment into flats. image credit Collective.

4th September 2017

Lyttelton

Lyttelton

A time lapse camera has been installed at Lyttelton time ball site to record the reconstruction of the Timeball tower. To follow the progress of the $3 million project which began in July, visit this site. Scheduled to be completed by the end of April 2018, the time ball will drop at 1pm each day. Heritage New Zealand and Hawkins Construction are sharing cost of the time lapse camera which records the progress of the project at ten minute intervals from 6.30am to 5.30pm while work is in progress. The project is being supervised by the team at Project Story.

28th August 2017

Gdansk Time Ball

Gdansk Time Ball

The time ball at Gdańsk was set up in 1876. From 1894 it was set up at the top of a lighthouse in the Nowy Port district of the town. The rise and drop each afternoon allowed mariners to set their chronometers, enabling them to calculate longitude at seas. 11.55 the ball was pulled to the top of the tower mast at 11.55 am daily. At twelve o’clock an electric impulse interrupted the circuit holding it with an electromagnet and the 75 kilo openwork steel ball slid down the mast. In 2008 the time ball was restored and today daily signals the time at 12:00, 14:00, 16:00 and 18:00. image credit Wikimedia Commons

21st August 2017

105mm Light Gun Model

105mm Light Gun Model

The photograph shows the model of a 105mm Light Gun which was presented to the One o’Clock Gun Asscn by 105 Regt RA Vols to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the One o’ Clock Gun. The model was presented to the chairman at Edinburgh Castle by Colonel Huthwaite who commanded the regiment in 2011.

14th August 2017

Kula Lotrscak Tower

Kula Lotrscak Tower

The Lotrščak Tower stands in the old part of Zagreb, Croatia. A fourth floor and windows were added to the tower and a cannon placed on the top in 1877. The cannon is fired from the Lotrščak Tower to mark midday and act as a signal for the city’s bell ringers. The tower, which dates back to the 13th century, was built to guard the southern gate of the Gradec town wall. The name is derived from Latin campana latrunculorum, meaning ‘thieves' bell’, referring to a bell hung in the tower in 1646 to signal the closing of the town gates. image credit Wikimedia Commons 

7th August 2017

Time Ball Building, Leeds

Time Ball Building, Leeds

Time Ball Buildings situated in Briggate, Leeds dates from the early 19th century. The building contained a distillery, saddlery, stationer and barber and perfumier. By 1869 the premises were unoccupied. Number 26 was occupied by watchmaker John Dyson in 1872. By 1890 he also occupied 24 and 25. The elaborately decorated frontage above 25 and 26 dates from 1872. The building has a gilded time ball and cantilevered clock, surmounted by a figure of Father Time carved by John Wormald Appleyard. A second clock by Potts of Leeds was installed in 1910. Connected to Greenwich, the time ball dropped daily at 1pm. image credit Wikimedia Commons.

31st July 2017

Wheel

Car Wheel

Vintage car enthusiasts have been bringing their vehicles to the Calton  Hill since the 1990s.  Collective invited innovative artist  Clara Ursitti  to work  with  the East of Scotland Car Club on  a new  one-off  performance which focuses on the unique sounds, scent and look of the enthusiasts'  vintage vehicles for this year’s Edinburgh Festival. Presented  as part of the Festival Art Late, featuring Collective,  Edinburgh Printmakers, Rhubaba, and Custom Lane. The gallery will be open from 10 am till 6 pm during the month of August.  

24th July 2017

South St Lighthouse

South St Lighthouse

Erected in 1913 the year following the disaster, the Titanic Memorial is a 60-foot-tall lighthouse which was built partly due to the instigation of Margaret Brown. The lighthouse stood above the East River on the roof of the old Seaman’s Church Institute of New York and New Jersey at the corner of  South Street and Coenties Slip. The time ball at the top of the lighthouse dropped at twelve noon, activated by a telegraphic signal from the Naval Observatory in Washington D.C.  until 1967. When the Seamen's Church Institute moved to 15 State Street in 1968, the memorial was donated by the Kaiser-Nelson Steel & Salvage Corporation to the South Street Seaport Museum. The memorial was erected at the entrance to the museum complex, on the corner of Fulton and Pearl streets  in 1976. The funding was provided by the Exxon Corporation.

17th July 2017

Margaret Brown

Margaret Brown

Born in Hannibal, Missouri, U.S.A. in 1867, Margaret Brown was a socialite and philanthropist. A survivor of the RMS Titanic disaster, she insisted that the crew of Lifeboat No. 6  return to the area where the passenger liner had gone down to look for survivors. Known to her friends as ‘Maggie’ she was referred to as the ‘Unsinkable Mrs. Brown’ in her obituaries when she died in 1932. ‘The Unsinkable Molly Brown’ based on her life opened on Broadway in 1960. The film adaptation was released four years later.

10th July 2017

Ship

Ship

A new film and installation‘The Heavy of Your Body Parts and The Cool Air of the Air Condition’ by Ross Little, traces the different forms of globalised labour. The film contrasts the experiences of employees working long shifts and the ‘digital nomad’ passengers. Combining luxury travel with online work, are represented in impressionistic, dream-like style. In the ship breaking yards of Alang, India, raw footage documents the decommissioning of a cargo ship and the subsequent journey of the scrap material. Though differing vastly in many respects, notably in their ability to freely speak and represent themselves, all workers in the film share a common status as economic migrants within globalised industries. The film can be seen at the Collective from 22nd July.

3rd July 2017

Lyttelton Time Ball

Lyttelton Time Ball

A ceremony will be held at the Reserve Terrace site in Lyttelton, New Zealand on Wednesday 5 July to mark the start of the project to set up the time ball which was destroyed during the earthquake in 2011. When completed visitors will be able to check their watches when the time ball drops daily at 1pm, while enjoying the views of the harbour and town from the park. An automated time ball mechanism is to be housed inside the tower. Although Heritage New Zealand looked into the possibilities of repairing the existing mechanism, the decision was taken to automate the dropping mechanism. image credit Heritage New Zealand

28th June 2017

Dr Bruce Vickery’s illustrated talk ‘Astronomy on Calton Hill’ takes place at 2.30 pm on Saturday, 1st July at the Nelson Monument. The all inclusive ticket costing £5.00 entitles members of the public access to the exhibition in the monument’s gallery plus access to the observation platform. An event not to be missed. Bruce's talk will continue on a weekly basis until the end of August.

27th June 2017

Open Day

Lucas - third from left

Lucas Clocks officially opens at noon on Saturday, 1st July. The firm owned by Lucas Marijnissen a highly experienced horologist is situated at 5 Quayside Street, Leith. Further information can be found here.   

14th June 2017

H.M.S. Royal Albert

H.M.S. Royal Albert

In May 1860, after lying at anchor for fifteen days in St. Margaret’s Hope in the Firth of Forth, the Channel Fleet led by H.M.S. Royal Albert under the command of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Howe Fremantle sailed down the Firth of Forth in a single line towards the North Sea heading for Yarmouth Roads. The squadron formed into two lines after passing Inchkeith. The fleet was followed by a flotilla of steamers carrying members of the public. Launched at Woolwich Dockyard in 1854, the three decker was armed with 121 guns. Originally designed as a sailing ship, she was converted to screw propulsion while still under construction.

28th May 2017

Book Cover

Book Cover

‘Astronomy on Calton Hill’ featuring the history of the observatory in the mid nineteenth century is now available. Written and meticulously  researched by astronomer Dr Bruce Vickery a member of the Astronomical Society of Edinburgh, the fascinating sixteen page fully illustrated booklet is filled with fascinating facts on the scientific instruments and the world class astronomers who worked in the observatory. Price £3.00 plus postage and packing. Enquire here to obtain your copy.

21st May 2017

William Wallace Gravestone

The Grave of William Wallace

William Wallace was born in Dysart, Fife in 1768. His family moved to Edinburgh in 1784 where he was apprenticed to a bookbinder. Interested in mathematics he also studied geometry, algebra and astronomy in his spare time. Helped and encouraged by John Playfair, he was appointed assistant teacher of mathematics at Perth Academy in 1794. In 1803 was employed at the Royal Military College at Great Marlow which later moved to Sandhurst. In 1819 he was appointed Professor of Mathematics at Edinburgh University where he gained a reputation for being an excellent teacher. He also acted as observer for the Astronomical Institution on the Calton Hill. When he died in 1843, he was buried in Greyfriars Kirkyard. image credit Wikimedia Commons  

14th May 2017

Rooum Cartoon

Rooum Image

Emotional Need explores the life and work of cartoonist Donald Rooum. Involved in political organising, publishing and comic illustration since the late-1940s, the artist’s commitment to anarchist politics form the catalyst for a film, featuring interviews, performed extracts of his writing, animated cartoons and staged performances. The film is shown in conjunction with a new soft-sculpture by Adam Lewis Jacob plus a selection of the artist’s original work and ephemera relating to his Wildcat Comics series. The exhibition runs from 27th May until 2nd July. image credit Donald Roum

7th May 2017

Observatory Restoration

Observatory Restoration

The foundations and walls of the Collective’s gallery, offices and restaurant are now in place, while the restoration of the ceilings and floors of the City Observatory is proceeding as scheduled. The floor joists inside the main building are being repaired prior to the installation of a new oak floor. The original lathe and plaster walls and the  ceilings are also being carefully restored. The false ceiling above the transit telescope has been removed, revealing the full length aperture above the transit telescope. image credit Collective.

3rd May 2017

H.R.H Prince Alfred

H.R.H Prince Alfred

A twenty one gun salute was fired from Edinburgh Castle to mark the visit of H.R.H.Prince Alfred Ernest Albert to the city on 17th May 1866. The prince was given the Freedom of the City by Lord Provost William Chambers when he opened the Edinburgh Museum of Science and Art. During the salute, one of the battery’s eighteen pounders ran over an artilleryman's foot. The gunner remained at his post until the salute was fired, before being taken to the military hospital to have his foot amputated. image credit Wikimedia Commons

26th April 2017

John Pringle Nichol

John Pringle Nichol

John Pringle Nichol was a leading figure in the Astronomical Institution of Glasgow. The institution was responsible for raising funds for the erection of a new observatory at Horselethill in the West End in 1841. Appointed Observer, the astronomer and his family moved into a house attached to the observatory. Although Professor Thomas Henderson the Astronomer Royal for Scotland tried to advise the astronomer on financial matters, his advice was ignored leading to the institution running into difficulties.

21st April 2017

STOP PRESS

We have been reunited with our original website which is http://1oclockgun.org. We will be moving everything from http://piazzi.uk to this site but will leave both running in parallel for a short while so that the search engines can adjust to the new arrangements.

12th April 2017

Robert Morham

Robert Morham

Born in 1839, David Morham was educated at Newington Academy and the Royal High School. In 1854 he was articled to architect David Rhind  before transferring to David Bryce. Moving to London, he returned to Edinburgh to join David Cousin, later becoming a partner in the firm. Appointed City Architect in 1873 he remodelled the interior of the Calton Hill observatory when it was taken over by the Town Council in the 1890s. The architect who died in 1912 is buried in Morningside Cemetery. image credit Edinburgh & the Lothians at the Opening of the 20th Century  

5th April 2017

Trinity College Kirk

Trinity College Kirk

Edinburgh’s Church on the Run!
An exhibition covering the history of the Trinity College Church, is currently running at the Central Library,  George IV Bridge. Consisting of prints from the library’s collection, including 18th century engravings,   19th century photographs and watercolour paintings, the exhibition looks at the creation, destruction and partial   survival of this important medieval church which was demolished to make way for the Waverley Station. 

31st March 2017

Motif

Motif

Alex Impey’s innovative art presentations consist of sculptural installation and text, which speculate on the production and organisation of value. Stretching across the gallery walls, the sculptural installation takes  on a mirrored form. Using  materials, ranging from car air ducts to chitin, a natural material derived from crab  shells which produce particular resonances, the presentation reflects the engineering practices used by animals  and the processes utilised by humankind to make sense of the world. 

24th March 2017

Gibraltar Time Ball

Gibraltar Time Ball

Laid by the Falmouth, Gibraltar and Malta Telegraph Company, the U.K. and Gibraltar were linked by submarine telegraph in 1870. Founded by John Pender the name of the company was changed to the Eastern Telegraph Company two years later. In 1883 a time ball was set up at the Windmill Hill Signal Station, Gibraltar. The electric signal which dropped the time ball at 10.00 am GMT was sent from Greenwich via the telegraph cable enabling mariners of vessels lying in the harbour and in the straits to check their chronometers. If the time ball failed to drop a black and white flag was flown from the mast. In 1904 the Admiralty commissioned a special clock made by Victor Kullberg, 105 Liverpool Road, London which was installed in the signal station before being transferred to the Chart and Chronometer depot, Gibraltar in 1935. In 1983 the clock was shipped to the Ministry of Defence Chronometer Section, Herstmonceux, to be cleaned and re-furbished before being installed in the Hydrographic Office, Taunton as historical artefact. The clock was transferred to the Royal Observatory, Greenwich in 2002. image credit Gibraltar Heritage Trust  

15th March 2017

Restoration

Restoration in progress

Restoration work at the Calton Hill observatory project is proceeding to plan. The foundations for a new gallery and restaurant have been laid. Several interior dividing walls which were added at a later date have been removed in order to restore the building to it’s original layout. The roof of the Transit House has been stripped, revealing a timber frame construction underneath. To read more about the progress and Collective's vision for a new kind of City Observatory, click here.

4th March 2017

John Pender, 1871

John Pender, Vanity Fair, 1871

Born in the Vale of Leven, Scotland in 1816, John Pender was educated in Glasgow. A successful merchant dealing in textile fabrics, realising the potential of the rapidly expanding communication industry, by1866 he was the leading financier, director and chairman of the companies responsible for laying the  transatlantic cable from Valentia Island off the coast of Ireland to Heart’s Content, Newfoundland and Labrador. Although the U.K. government began buying up the inland telegraph companies in 1868, overseas companies were left in private hands. In 1869 John Pender founded the British-Indian Submarine Telegraph Company and the Falmouth, Gibraltar and Malta Telegraph Company. John Pender founded thirty two telegraph companies, including the Eastern Telegraph Company. image credit Wikimedia Commons  >

25th February 2017

Boston Time Ball

Boston Time Ball

A copper time ball weighing almost 400 pounds was set up on the roof of the Equitable Life Assurance Society building which stood at the corner of Devonshire and Milk Streets, Boston Masssachusetts in 1878. The time ball was operated by two signalmen supervised by a sergeant from the U.S. Army Signal Corps. The time was sent from the Harvard Observatory. By the end of the 1880s the U.S. Naval Observatory, Washington D.C. was responsible for providing government time signals. Time balls were dropped at noon in the U.S.A. image credit Wikimedia Commons 

18th February 2017

Ralph Allen Sampson

Ralph Allen Sampson

Born in Schull, County Cork, Ireland in 1866, Ralph Allen Sampson was appointed Astronomer Royal for Scotland and Professor of Astronomy at the University of  Edinburgh in 1910. A single pendulum clock made by Molyneux which had also been used at the observatory on the Calton Hill supplied to the time to Edinburgh and Dundee. The astronomer replaced the clock with a standard clock of high precision constructed by Dr Sigmund Riefler the inventor of the Riefler escapement. image credit Wikimedia Commons

11th February 2017

Frank Watson Dyson

Frank Watson Dyson

Born in Measham near Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire in 1868, Frank Watson  Dyson was appointed Astronomer Royal for Scotland in 1905. Five years later he was appointed Astronomer Royal. Knighted in 1915, in addition to introducing the distribution of the ‘six pips’ signal via the BBC in 1924, he was responsible for installing a new free pendulum clock in Greenwich Observatory, the most accurate clock available at that time and for organising the regular wireless transmission from the GPO wireless station at Rugby of Greenwich Mean Time. The astronomer was buried at sea when he died during a return trip to England from Australia in 1939. image credit Wikimedia Commons 

4th February 2017

Work in progress

Work in progress, January 2017

Work on refurbishing the Calton Hill observatory is proceeding as scheduled. The image shows that the north perimeter wall has been opened out and the area of the new subterranean gallery has been prepared. Donations are still needed. For further details check out this site

28th January 2017

Ralph Copeland

Ralph Copeland

When the new Royal Observatory moved from the Calton Hill to the Blackford Hill, Professor Copeland was still required to supply the signal for the time ball, the time gun on the Half Moon Battery, the naval dockyard clock at Rosyth, the clocks at the University, the General Post Office and the Dundee time gun which meant that the difference in longitude between the two observatories had to be determined. The new location was found to be 1.17 seconds west of the observatory on the Calton Hill.

21st January 2017

Greyfriars Bobby Day

Greyfriars Bobby Day 2017

Greyfriars Bobby Commemoration Day took place on Saturday 14th January. Edinburgh was at the forefront in the development of printing, engineering, brewing and medicine when Bobby first appeared in Greyfriars Kirkyard. Bobby’s arrival coincided with the proposal for an urban renewal project which would bring an end to the city’s overcrowded and unsanitary housing conditions. The Improvement Act of 1867 led to the ancient tenements being demolished and new buildings erected in the centre of the city. The Lord Provost William Chambers also presented the wee dog with a licence and a brand new collar. image credit Alan Morton

11th January 2017

Greyfriars Kirkyard

Greyfriars Kirkyard

Greyfriars Bobby Commemoration Day takes place on Saturday 14th January. Edinburgh was at the forefront in the development of printing, engineering, brewing and medicine when Bobby first appeared in Greyfriars Kirkyard. Bobby’s arrival coincided with a proposed an urban renewal project which would bring an end to the city’s overcrowded and unsanitary housing conditions. The Improvement Act of 1867 led to the ancient tenements being demolished and new buildings erected in the centre of the city. The Lord Provost William Chambers also presented the wee dog with a licence and a brand new collar. For details of Saturday’s event check out here (opens a new tab in your browser).

7th January 2017

Lyttelton Timeball Station

Lyttelton Timeball Station

Dr. Roger Kinns has completed his paper on the principal time balls set up in New Zealand. Last November Roger travelled to New Zealand to compile notes on the country’s time signals in the public libraries of Auckland and Christchurch. Accurate time signals were essential for navigation in the Pacific. The time ball service at Wellington began in March 1864. Although the time balls at Wellington and Lyttelton were included in the 1880 Admiralty list of time signals, Otago being added later, due to a long period of docks redevelopment, the service at Wellington was suspended until it was resumed at a different harbour location in 1888. The photograph shows the Lyttelton time ball station which was destroyed during an earthquake which occurred in the Christchurch region in 2011. image credit Wikimedia Commons.