Around the World in 8 ways...

So, if the grind continues for you in July, here’s how to get a taste of exotic climes right here in Stockbridge, as we go round the world in 8 ways....

  1.  Go east for a meal, with authentic sushi, sashimi and teppanaki, with Sukura Japanese restaurant
  2. In any weather you can pretend you are in different parts of the globe in the Botanics. Transport yourself to the mountainous landscapes in their new Alpine House or use the Edinburgh sea haar to imagine you are up in the Chinese mountains on their Chinese hillside, or transport yourself to the humid rainforest inside their glasshouses .

3.  Marvel again at the amazing global support and bravery of those involved in the cave rescue of the youth football team, and be pleased we don’t (officially) have monsoon rain, as you enjoy Thai Street Box, bringing the taste of this Southeast Asian country to Raeburn Place.

4.  Canadian Chris Donnelly is showing porcelain pieces inspired by Japan in Saorsa Art Gallery, see their delicate, exotic beauty. Alpha Art has a wide collection of international and domestic artist, go see the global influence on their work.

 

5.  Step into Unknown Italy, with their traditional and artisanal treats on offer, and maybe take it further by having a chat with Flavours, Italian Holidays, about an Italian cooking (or painting, or photography, or pilates) holiday.

6. France is still celebrating their World Cup win. Pretend you’ve just woken up in the Champs-Élysée, and pop into La Barantine for a Gallic breakfast.

 

 

7. Get some Italian style with couturier Sergio Tosoratti. After treatment by Sergio and Gaston, you can strut your stuff with the best in Milan.

8.  If you simply can’t bear the temptations on offer any more, the just step into Jimmy Martin Travel, and get booking for your own personalised foreign holiday!

Gimmee 5 things to do outdoors in Stockbridge ...

The days are long, the sun is out, and it's warm enough to ditch the jumper ... sometimes. It's June, it's solstice month, and we're thinking of how best to make use of the Great Stockbridge Outdoors.

So...Gimmee Five Outdoor Pursuits in Stockbridge.

 Sunbathing in Inverleith Park. Copyright Martin C Stewart

Sunbathing in Inverleith Park. Copyright Martin C Stewart

  1. The first, is to make use of the brilliant communal space of Inverleith Park. Our favourite spot is the south facing hill that rises up above the pond, giving a perfect incline to absorb the rays (safely, with SPF, please), watch the cygnets with their parents, and gaze across the old city to the castle on its rocky mount. Grab a picnic too - some healthy fruit from the Greengrocer, very moreish bread from Herbies of Edinburgh, cheese from George Mewes Cheese, and finish off with a cake and coffee from The Pastry Section.
 

2. You can't consider yourself a Stockbridge Local until you've given a tourist directions to the Botanics. If the sun's out, it's likely this place will be busy with families with prams, tourists and their maps and locals grabbing a bit of flora. Don't worry, though, there are plenty of nooks and quieter paths where you can sit amongst plants from around the world and just soak up the beauty. If you're inspired, there's the Botanics shop to try to recreate a little of the spirit of what you've seen.

 Circus Lane. Copyright: Martin C Stewart

Circus Lane. Copyright: Martin C Stewart

3. We've got the adorable Circus Lane with its beautifully manicured plants tumbling onto the cobbled streets, we've got the stately Fettes College with its grand facade, and there are countless inspiring patches along the Water of Leith, with waterfalls, Dean Bridge and St Bernard's Well to wander round. So, if it's clear, grab a camera and have a sightsee around our beautiful architecture that's free to visit, and don't forget the annual Stockbridge Duck Race will be in action on the 1st July at 3pm, a perfect fun, photo opportunity.

 

4. Wimbledon's approaching, which means it's primetime for outdoor pursuits. Watch cricket at the Grange's beautifully manicured ground, or, if you're over fifty, get yourself involved in walking touch rugby at the Accies. The new initiative is on Monday mornings at 10am on Raeburn Place, just bring your trainers and £2! Inverleith Park itself is a perfect site for training- British Military Fitness run classes there, there's the wooden circuits around the perimeter to test you, and the fixed equipment by the playpark, or the personal trainer Be-Fit360 will train women at any suitable location- the sundial garden is a great spot. If you're wanting to stretch it out, take an Eco Yoga Mat with you, and you can sit in Lotus while soaking in the sounds of buzzing bees and smell of wild flowers in the new wilder sections.

 Try some walking touch rugby in the Accies ground. Copyright Martin C Stewart

Try some walking touch rugby in the Accies ground. Copyright Martin C Stewart

 Hectors for alfresco lunch. Copyright Martin C Stewart

Hectors for alfresco lunch. Copyright Martin C Stewart

5. Of course, you think of Stockbridge on a sunny day and it doesn't take long to thing of all the places you can sit outside to enjoy a meal. Wine and cheese at Henri's. A platter at Hectors. Brunch at The Pantry. Simply taking a walk through the streets of Stockbridge gives you a host of culinary choices to choose from, and many places to sit out and watch the world go by as you do it.

Womankind Beauty Charity Crystal Ball

Stockbridge Local were honoured to work in association with Womankind Beauty in their creation of the Charity Crystal Ball, which took place at the Corn Exchange in Edinburgh on 11 May. 

Womankind's owner Lauren McGinty, decided to host a ball in celebration of 15 years in business. The idea evolved to create an event to support both Maggie's and SiMBA, the cancer support network and the charity that supports those who suffer the loss of a baby, respectively, after two staff members were tragically affected. Lauren had spent five months in the set up of the ball, gathering prizes and selling tickets.

The generosity of people has been overwhelming,” she commented, “I can’t believe the number of prizes, and couldn’t have asked for any more of anybody.
— Lauren McGinty, Womankind Owner

In October 2016, Lauren's staff member Patrycja, lost her husband to cancer. On Friday, Patrycja admitted to experiencing mixed emotions, being pleased at the friends who were there to support the event, but sad that some family couldn't make it. Patrycja made a brave speech, talking about her husband and the devastation of cancer, bringing it home the wonderful work that Maggie's do to support anyone affected by the illness.

 Staff of Womankind Beauty (L-R), Jenna, Monika, Angela, Lauren, Tegan, Patrycja, Roisin.

Staff of Womankind Beauty (L-R), Jenna, Monika, Angela, Lauren, Tegan, Patrycja, Roisin.

For Tegan, the Head Therapist of Womankind, it was also poignant, as it was in August 2017 she lost her daughter Lottie at 23 weeks, but on Friday Tegan reflected how special the event felt, honouring her daughter and the work of SiMBA whose work had given them valuable time in a family room at the hospital.


 Although the speeches were high with emotion, the event was full of fun. Host Big Al, who said that Maggie's was close to his heart having had his daughter's mother suffer from breast cancer, lead the proceedings, starting with awarding Alexandra Miedziak the goodies from the 'key game', after the key she bought unlocked the box with free rail tickets, a night in the Principal Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow and a bottle of champagne with accompanying flutes.


The night continued apace from there, with auctions of panto tickets, nights in the Raeburn and many other events, winning high bids.


The tables were stacked with street food- mini quiches, dim sum, pizza, chicken kebabs and lamb burgers- and the drink flowed. After the auction, it was time to hit the dance floor, with Jools Holland's Jam House resident band "The Black Beez" rocking the room.

Once it was all over, everyone exhausted, it was great news to learn that the event had raised £8,252 for the two charities.

Well done Lauren!

All pictures taken by Martin Stewart, please email if you would like to purchase any. 

 

From Dawn til Dusk

There's a curious sight on the streets of Stockbridge. A pale creature, startled by the sun, eyes blinking frequently against the bright spring glare of sun bouncing off the polished shop front glass of Chetty & Das and Annie Smith, and the sparkling river with its cheerful ducks turning their minds to building nests.

It's me, and people like me, emerging from our cosy burrows now that seemingly everlasting winter has managed to blow itself out.

But what's this? An extra hour! And warmth on my skin!  What can we do with this amazing spring blessing?

Don't worry, we at Stockbridge Local can ease you into the great British Summer Time, with our dawn til dusk guide to our high street.

westwoods.jpg

Let's start early. Let's take this optimism that the morning chorus has brought us and bounce out of bed and get to Westwoods for 6.30am and get in that pool first thing. Strap on your SwimTag wristband, hook it up to Strava, and get lapping the pool, knowing that every stroke is buying you health bonus points.

Now, towel it off quickly, and get to your breakfast: you've earned it. Pure Gray is open from 8am, so just in time for you to make it for a window seat and watch harried parents get their children to school while you bask in a satisfied glow and enjoy your blueberry and banana muffin or bacon roll.

Lee Mitchell.jpg

Now, I trust you took my advice and only towelled off your hair: the salon awaits. Wash away any residual chlorine, Lee Mitchell Hairdressing is going to take good care of you. Open from 9am Thursday to Saturday (and 9.30am Monday-Wednesday), you've plenty of time to be groomed for the day.

This is only the beginning of your personal spring clean. You've got the day off work, and people to see! Once you've been blow dried to perfection, make your way to WomanKind for an extra dose of polish. You've chosen some brow threading at 10am, having decided against teeth whitening...for now. You emerge fresh as a daisy into this bright new world.

La Barantine.jpg

Well, it's 11am and time to show off the newly groomed you. Let's go for coffee with a great pal at La Barantine, and maybe squeeze in a fabulous French fancy. You feel all superior about your early morning workout as you select a bright macaron. You catch up on all the news, then your friend tells you she wants a second opinion on a piece in Alpha Art (open 11am) that she's thinking for a birthday surprise. You know you've got a long, busy day ahead of you, so you agree and enjoy the relaxed vibe as you wonder around the large gallery.

 

 

 

The piece is fantastic, so it's reserved, and you're in the mood for art. You must go and see Lennon Art then, with its Taking Shape Exhibition showing this month (open at noon), so you both go and are seriously inspired.

Lennon Art Taking Shape Exhibition.jpg

But now, the sun is high and Hector's has its tables out! You have a 1pm appointment with its drinks list and an old uni pal. The pair of you meet up and grab a prime people-watching spot, and all don sunglasses to make full use of it.

You all opt for the Continental Sharing Board with its Camembert baked in sourdough, mixed meat and olives, and while you wait, you all relax with some specialised gin and tonics which fizz and sparkle in the early afternoon sun.

Annie Smith spring.jpg

Oh whoops! It's 2 o'clock already, but you're having so much fun so let's say it's 3pm when you embark on today's shopping. It's a list of gifts for various friends and family; each of you with a hit list that you tackle. For you, it's the Treehouse first, which have a top quality selection of children's toys. You select one, guaranteed to keep you on the Best Godmother list, for both Godchild and parent. Also on your list it's a present for your boyfriend's mother, and you have an idea she'd love something unique from Adam Pottery. You've been very good doing that, so you all have a great time being shown some favourites by Ariel at Annie Smith, because, quite frankly, these days you have to be quite specific with your own birthday list or else Boyfriend might not make the best judgement.

Ariel talks you through some beautifully shaped studs, but it's a hammered heart on pearls that you jot down before dragging your friends away from the diamond selection. Whatever they say, they aren't engaged, you try to convey with your eyes.

'4 o'clock is cheese o'clock!' declares your friends, who you now remember were always quite a lot to handle, so it's George Mews for a selection they plan to take for an al fresco wine and cheese session in Inverlieth Park. As your friends totter off up to the park, and you reflect that maybe they'd been a bit too keen on the artisan gin at Hector's. You, on the other hand, have a 5 o'clock appointment at Chetty & Das (because you've only one set of eyes...) so it's lines of letters and whether the red or the green is brighter, and it's a clean bill of health for your retinas. Phew!

Next up, muscles (6pm)! Balanced Edinburgh gives you a good going over, pressing deep into your back and conditioning those muscles. Being open until 8pm Monday to Thursday means Balanced Edinburgh can offer their massages, Pilates and physiotherapy at a time that fits in with most lifestyles. 

10 st vincent Blog .jpg

Rush home, change, because you're meeting boyfriend for a pre dinner drink at 7pm. Of course, you're late, but he doesn't mind because you got the gift for his mother spot on, and the St Vincent has some perfect real ales for him.

It's the four of you, you (potential) future in laws and yourselves for dinner at Purslane, the cosy environment perfect for a convivial meal that looks as amazing as it is to eat. You're there for 8pm, so at the end of the day there's just time to sample the wine list at Good Brothers Wine Bar, each of you trying out a different wine by the glass for fun.

Caring Stockbridge

"My husband lay across the pavement and road in St Bernard's Crescent while waiting for the ambulance after falling and breaking his hip on 28 Jan. He was bitterly cold, uncomfortable and all these lovely people appeared with blankets, hat, gloves and hot water bottles. Thank you, he hopes to be operated on today."

 Karina Emslie (Chaska Photography)

Karina Emslie (Chaska Photography)

This was seen recently with the huge snowfalls we experienced. Locals helped check on neighbours, and Stockbridger Sean Seymour, amongst others, offered their 4 by 4 vehicle to help people stuck. So many people helped clear the streets, including students from Fettes college (shown here), helping Stockbridge to get back in action.

So Angela Rushbrook of Leslie Place wrote to us in January this year after her husband lay on the street for two hours in the freezing conditions we’ve experienced this winter. The kindness shown here is something to cheer the heart, and it's reassuring that there are people around who are willing to help. We can be proud that our urban village of Stockbridge has a tradition of compassion and helping others.

 Karina Emslie (Chaska Photography)

Karina Emslie (Chaska Photography)

The local history book Stockbridge, In Living Memory, gives some lively accounts from locals who remember some of the various churches taking in poorer children off the street for a night a week and giving them tea and buns. The church in Dean Street used to take disadvantaged children on free trips to places such as Lauriston Castle.

 Stockbridge Church

Stockbridge Church

Today, Stockbridge Church still carries the mantle, particularly with its community space Number 7, on Raeburn Place, which holds games afternoons, coffee mornings, art classes and story-telling evenings to allow people to meet each other and form connections within the community. Always open at some point during weekdays, with times jotted on the door, feel free to pop in with any queries, and Alex, if he can't help himself, will point you in the right direction and offer you a decent cup of coffee!

As the decades have rolled over, the demographic of the place has changed. At the turn of the century, families were bigger, people typically having four or more children.

 Canmore,  © RCAHMS

Canmore, © RCAHMS

On Raeburn Place, where the Scotmid now sits, was the site of the Edinburgh Academy's Stockbridge Boys' Club, with a big gymnasium at the back and football teams to participate in sport, run for the benefit of local boys.  

Of course now people are having fewer children, later, and one of society’s great challenges is loneliness, particularly in older people. Stockbridge Church plays its part with Number 7, and with its regular services, and in Stockbridge we are privileged to host LifeCare, which works both city wide and locally in supporting older people and their carers.

With a burgeoning older population, it's not only loneliness but dementia which needs supported. LifeCare have their St Bernard’s Club situated on site in Cheyne Street, where people with dementia can enjoy breakfast and activities such as baking, reminiscing and tai chi or enjoy  regular trips, such as being driven round old dance hall haunts. The Dean, another social club, lets seniors meet up and plan activities. LifeCare are also lead partners in a fabulous volunteer service, called Vintage Vibes, matching up volunteers with their VIPs through common interests. If you are interested in finding out more, just give LifeCare a buzz: click on the link to find out their contact details.

 Lifecare

Lifecare

LifeCare is the spot for so many clubs and activities, and a great place for a coffee and a chat with the prams. It's fitting that a place which is so accessible for young parents and comfortable for breastfeeding, also lets those parents give back, by supporting the cafe and using the halls, these parents are in turn supporting the work of LifeCare in helping older people.

Stepping away from the compassionate help of the elderly, Stockbridge is also the site of the Colonies, themselves a great example of the spirit of giving people a chance. The formation of the Edinburgh Cooperative Building Company in 1861 allowed people with a regular, modest income, to afford to buy a house outright over 15-20 years, at a time when many of the older tenements were overcrowded and unsanitary. The spirit of the initiative is still alive in Stockbridge today, with the member owned Capital Credit Union on Hamilton Place there to help those trying to get on the property ladder, with their 'people helping people' ethos.

Angela and Ray's experience shows that people are still as inclined to help on the spot as ever, but it's nice to know that there are people and systems set up locally that are there to support us when we might need it most.


Any charities also get a 20% discount when joining Stockbridge Local - us doing our part too!

Written by Lucy Lloyd

Capital Credit Union's winner walks away with a car!

Christmas may be becoming a distant memory for most of us, but Capital Credit Union, with its Head Office on Hamilton Place, still got to play the part of Santa recently.  Richard Langan, a Scotmid store staff member, was delighted to be presented with a brand new Suzuki Celerio, after winning the Capital Credit Union Lottery.

In becoming a member of the Capital Credit Union, all members have the option of a £1 monthly lottery deduction, in order to win a monthly £3,000 jackpot, or as Mr Langan discovered, a special 'Christmas bonus' prize. 

The Capital Credit Union has agreements with a number of organisations across Scotland to allow members to save directly from their salary. For us with access to Stockbridge, it's easy to find out more- by popping into the Hamilton Place office. 

  John Brodie MBE, CEO of Scotmid Co-operative, and Marlene Shiels OBE, the CEO of Capital Credit Union, present Richard Langan with his new Suzuki Celerio from the Belmont Group

John Brodie MBE, CEO of Scotmid Co-operative, and Marlene Shiels OBE, the CEO of Capital Credit Union, present Richard Langan with his new Suzuki Celerio from the Belmont Group

Golden Wonder celebrates 70th Birthday & Launches 'Chippie' range in Stockbridge

Golden Wonder.png

In September, 2017 Golden Wonder recently celebrated its 70th anniversary by introducing a new line of crisps in Stockbridge, where the brand was created 70 years ago.

William Alexander was a baker and he started making crisps in 1947 and named the crisps after Golden Wonder potatoes and the name has become well known throughout the land. 

The new Golden Wonder Chippies range, consisting of Curry, Salt and Vinegar and Ready Salted flavoured crisps and was launched at the same time.

Maxi's restored to former glory & reopens as Cowan & Sons

The ever popular Maxi's, now Cowan & Sons has become the latest business to benefit from a scheme aimed at restoring the Capital’s shop fronts to their former glory.

Cowan & Sons

Noel and Rebecca Cowan, owners of Maxi’s at 33 Raeburn Place, approached Edinburgh World Heritage (EWH) for help after their café’s historic stain glass windows fell into disrepair.  The conservation scheme, provides grants to business owners looking to conserve historic buildings, to reinstate traditional architectural features that may have been lost or neglected over time. The couple were left heartbroken when they were advised by glaziers to remove the period stain glass in favour of modern double glazing.

The neighbourhood café was the first coffee shop on Raeburn Place before chains such as Cafe Nero, Costa Coffee and Starbucks arrived, when it opened its doors in 1997 and has since become a Stockbridge institution.

The old shop front was in a very bad shape. Our windows, although they were beautiful, were crumbling and were badly in disrepair and we didn’t know what to do with them. The grant is vital to keep the beautiful original features that we have in our city. It is amazing to have a company looking out for Edinburgh’s interests. It took a year from initial contact until the shop was finished. Without the grant, we would not have been able to restore the property.
— Rebecca Cowan
Cowan & Sons

The neighbourhood café was the first coffee shop on Raeburn Place before chains such as Cafe Nero, Costa Coffee and Starbucks arrived, when it opened its doors in 1997 and has since become a Stockbridge institution.

During the recent renovations, Noel and Rebecca also discovered original tiling underneath old plasterwork.

Since completing the project, the couple said that the café has seen increased footfall from locals and tourists. 

EWH spends over £100,000 a year supporting the shop front scheme, excluding money property owners themselves contribute to refurbishments. In the last 10 years, the project in its current form has helped to restore more than 50 shop fronts, the latest beneficiary being Maxi’s.

Edinburgh is famous for its World Heritage Site and shopfronts play a very important role in the city’s unique historic character. Traditional features add interest and variety and can make a shop distinctive. These are an asset to a retail business and should be retained. A single high-quality shop front can make a significant improvement to the streetscape.
— Stuart Buchanan, Edinburgh World Heritage Site

EWH funding aims to help small businesses, community groups and charities throughout the Edinburgh UNESCO World Heritage site to safeguard its historic architecture.

Biggest flat fish Armstrong's of Stockbridge sees in 26 years

Not so long ago Armstrong’s of Stockbridge fishmongers was in the local news after taking a delivery of a huge tuna fish and they are in the news again after taking delivery of a flat fish weighing over 16 stone and measuring 6ft in length. 

This time it is a halibut and it is the biggest fish of its kind that Armstrong’s has seen in 26 years of running their business.

The fish was caught at Rockall, a small, remote and uninhabited British island more than 100 miles west of St Kilda in the North Atlantic Ocean.  The fish is estimated to feed just short of 1,000 people.

Hollywood Hit 'Mrs Doubtfire' originated in Stockbridge

 Madame Doubtfire outside her shop in 1973, Picture Credit - The Scotsman

Madame Doubtfire outside her shop in 1973, Picture Credit - The Scotsman

Mrs Doubtfire, the Hollywood box office hit movie about a cross-dressing, half-Scottish nanny played by the late Robin Williams has its origins in Stockbridge.

The real Mrs Doubtfire was Annabella Coutts, a shop owner in Edinburgh. Mrs Coutts had ‘Madame Doubtfire’ daubed across the exterior of her premises at South East Circus Place. and it quickly became the name by which most locals referred to her.


 Madame Doubtfire's shop, 1960's, Picture Credit - The Scotsman

Madame Doubtfire's shop, 1960's, Picture Credit - The Scotsman

Located at the foot of a flight of typical New Town basement steps, Madame Doubtfire’s was a dimly-lit second-hand store crammed with bric-a-brac, clothes, antiques and the distinct aroma of pipe smoke and cats. Her slogan “Madame Doubtfire, cast-off clothing of all description, invites inspection” used to amuse the local kids.

Madame Doubtfire was awfully fond of her felines and kept several.


I remember her sitting outside her shop in the early 1970s with her numerous cats. I think she had about half a dozen. Some were less than friendly and would snarl and hiss if you got too close! There were plenty well-off residents in the area able to supply her with a never-ending supply of the very best second hand goods. Only down side was you had to hold your nose the whole time, because it stank to high heavens of cat pee!
— Former local resident, Olivia McAdam

 Madame Doubtfire with one of her many cats. Picture Credit - Douglas Corrance, The Scotsman

Madame Doubtfire with one of her many cats. Picture Credit - Douglas Corrance, The Scotsman


 Madame Doubtfire Gallery 

Madame Doubtfire Gallery 

Madame Doubtfire became a local legend, and the epitome of the classic New Town eccentric - but she wasn’t actually from the district at all.

Nowhere near it, in fact.

Ends.


End of an Era for Stockbridge Stalwarts, plus Two Doors Open

 

 

A CORNER of Stockbridge has ushered in the end of an era as the community said a fond farewell to brothers Ernesto (Nino) and Franco Alonzi of Franco’s Fish & Chips after 46 years and Moira Barnes, who has been selling Sunday papers from her stall opposite the popular Raeburn Place chippy for over 38 years.  

 Nino, Moira & Franco

Nino, Moira & Franco


Some history about the Alonzi family:

  • 1958, the Alonzi brothers’ parents, Vincenzo and Bernice left Picinisco, a commune in the Province of Frosinone in the Italian region of Lazio, 120km east of Rome in pursuit of a better life in Newport, Wales when Ernesto (Nino) was 5 years old and Franco was 3
  • 1964, Vincenzo and Bernice moved to Stockbridge Edinburgh and their first business, the Park Café, a confectionery and tobacconist shop, which later changed to an ice cream bar, Capones, which the brothers lease to Ailsa Rollo and called Rollo. The brothers helped their parents out after school.
  • 1970 they expanded the business and they bought the chip shop opposite and named it Franco’s
  • 1981 they branched out further and purchased Dougall's grocery store two doors along from the chip shop, and ran a grocery store for 3 years before converting it to the San Marco Restaurant.
  • 1986 they acquired the hairdressers next door and expanded San Marco’s floor space.
  • 1992 for the final time they expanded the business by buying the cobbler and dress makers next door, creating the San Marco Wine Bar
  • 2012 the brothers shut the San Marco doors and leased out the space to Tom Kitchin, who opened it into the Scran & Scallie Restaurant


1. Nino, Franco, Vincenzo and Bernice

2. Sean Connery in San Marcos

3. Vinnie in Franco's

4. Franco's daughter with Tom Kitchin


 Franco, Pino & Nino

Franco, Pino & Nino

Susannah of Stockbridge Local, met up with the brothers for breakfast at The Scran & Scallie. They were overwhelmed by the community reaction to them retiring and enjoyed sharing some special memories collected over the years.  

Nino said: “We’ve appreciated all the custom over the years, some regulars and some well-known names.  We’ve had a special relationship with local schools, including Broughton High and Fettes. 

I can assure customers the quality of service and standard of food will continue under Mr Giuseppe (Pino) Vita who leases the business from us with the help of his family, in particular his 22 year-old son, Ricardo.  Pino has over 25 years catering experience and run an Italian restaurant in Tollcross.  We’ve have had the pleasure of knowing Pino for a number of years as he worked for us in the San Marco kitchen from 1994 -1998.  

Initially I will swing by a few times a week to help Pino out and I will enjoy seeing many familiar faces walking down Raeburn Place.  My son Vincenzo (Vinny), who recently got married and moved to America, has also been at the forefront of our business over recent years.  We have fantastic memories and will be sad to say cheerio”. 

He then went on to describe the change they had seen in Stockbridge over the years, initially they were surrounded by shoes shops, a dairy, now Mr Acram’s, a bank, clothes shop, a chemist and a toy shop.  He recalled their father never taking a day off.  Every New Year’s Eve a neuro-surgeon, Dr Patel from New York used to be the last footer and first footer in the Park Café with his coal before enjoying a dram.  He said, now there are a number of fine establishments, including the popular Raeburn across the road, Rollo and The Pastry Section, which only opened its doors recently and he enjoyed going in for a lovely coffee and pastry each morning.


"DCIB (Double Cheese Burger In Bun), a Franco’s favourite amongst the pupils at Fettes College throughout the years!" William Forsyth

"All the best guys, thanks for the memories (and the suppers).  I first moved to Stocky when I was 15 and Franco's was a regular port of call. Franco was usually seen more often in San Marco's next door than the chippy, but Nino was always behind the counter - serving customers with a smile. One of life's good guys, and I wish them both well for the future. Their place in Stockbridge folklore is assured!" Colin Leslie

"So many memories, was my first job." Linda Tuff

"Been going for almost 37 years. Can remember their mother making sure they were doing "right" in the early years. Don't forget San Marco - kid friendly haven." Shaun Vigers

"Worked here a few years back, best chippy and the best people!" Natasha Welsh

"Our family loved the chippie and San Marco next door was the first place my week old daughter went for dinner! Good luck to you and your families in the future." Annette Hughes

"Grafters and gentlemen, will be a big loss to Stockbridge, enjoy your retirement guys, hope to still see you along Raeburn Place now and again." Armstrong's of Stockbridge (10% off)


 Franco's, captured by local, Nigel Clark

Franco's, captured by local, Nigel Clark

Franco’s is a firm favourite in Stockbridge and over the years, the family-run business has become a real part of the community. Many people have a lot of fond memories of Franco’s - of the friendly welcome and some of the best chip butties in the city!  I know I won’t be alone in wishing Franco and Nino all the best.
— Tom Kitchin

New owner Pino said:

“I’m excited to take on this new challenge now my family have grown up.  I intend on keeping the name, Franco’s and giving the place of a bit of a face-lift.  We already source our fish from Armstrong’s across the road and I’m hoping to introduce burgers with beef from George Bower’s Butchers, just a few doors down, along with doing chicken kebabs. We look forward to welcoming you and are delighted to be part of the Stockbridge community.  We will continue relationships with regulars, welcome new customers and are continuing to work with Stockbridge Local, who have 3 fish suppers to win  and we are offering everyone a free can of juice (excluding San Pellegrino) with every supper purchased before the end of the month."  


 Moira with local John Donnelly

Moira with local John Donnelly

 

"Franco’s is an institution I’ve been going to for 20yrs. The banter was always good and Veronica babysat all our 3 kids growing up. What can you say about Vinnie…legend. The family will be greatly missed”.

Moira is a gem, a one off. I’ve bought my papers there for 20yrs and loved her chat. Always cheery even when winding her up about Hearts. It’s gone full circle as she started telling me when my sons were coming home at 4am instead of me. I will miss her greatly."

Local John Donnelly, CEO Marketing Edinburgh


 Local buying his last paper from Moira

Local buying his last paper from Moira

 

 

Moira Barnes from Penicuik also stands down after selling the Sunday ‘papers on Raeburn Place, Stockbridge since 1978, over 38 years ago.  Moira’s husband, David stood in to cover the stand on 1 January 1978, which then turned into Moria taking over 6 months later.

Moira was once awarded a ‘Community Award’ by The Edinburgh Evening News.

Sunday 18 June was the last day Moira rose at 2.30am to start her day selling the Sunday ‘papers to the people of Stockbridge.  Locals came out in force to wish the humble Moria their cheerios, armed with presents and taking photos. 


 Locals, including Margaret Power with Moira & Nino

Locals, including Margaret Power with Moira & Nino

 

“Hail, rain, snow, Moira would be there, never complained and often didn’t even wear gloves in the winter, always with a smile”.  Locals, Moira & Mike Power

“We’ll have to organise and OBE for Moira, a wonderful woman, who I’ve been getting my paper from since day one as did my parents.  I cancelled my weekend away, just to wish farewell to this wonderful woman and I know someone that came in specially from Fife to say cheerio.  I used to take Moira some onions and potatoes from my allotment, she will be sadly missed in the area.”  Local, Stewart Dickson

“Moira is the most amazing person I’ve ever met, I lost my husband and enjoyed seeing Moira with my dog, Zack”.  Local, Elaine


“All the dogs loved Moira, she always had a treat for every dog.  Moira was like the community hub who brought people together, almost like the modern kirk where people would stop and have a good chat”.  James Simpson  


Moira would often be seen propped up against the stand reading her book in between serving customers.  She was only absent for comfort breaks and the Scran & Scallie would bring her a coffee each morning.  

Susannah heard some interesting stories from Moira and from locals who only knew her from buying their Sunday ‘paper from Moira.  The newspaper stand has been manned for over 100 years. Moira spoke about the early days when the van would pull up with the ‘papers and the guys would throw them from the back of the van in through the window of the gift shop next door, where they would stay dry on rainy days, then chuckles that that would never be allowed these days. Local businesses and residents clubbed together to present Moira with a farewell gift.


 Locals bid farewell to Moira at   The Raeburn

Locals bid farewell to Moira at The Raeburn

New to the Stockbridge community are: 

The Six Cafe

 

The Six Cafe, a cute, little café and deli with a Scandinavian flair. Apart from breakfast and lunch, they offer delicious, homemade sweet treats and freshly made smoothies along with their own 'Six of Stockbridge' coffee. In addition to an outside area, it is the perfect place to sip a coffee or enjoy a freshly made sandwich while enjoying the sunshine or being cosy inside with a hot chocolate on a rainy day.  They are offering Stockbridge Locals a free 'Six of Stockbridge' coffee with every gourmet sandwich and cake purchased, simply email to receive you unique code. 


The Pastry Section

 

 

 

Pastry Section, a contemporary pastry house, serving delicious home-made cakes on site.  Relax and sit in while watching the world go by with a cuppa or take a cake or two away in a lovely box with a coffee to keep you going. 

Ends

Good Brothers awarded The List’s Best New Bar

WINE lover? If so you will be spoiled for choice at Good Brothers Wine Bar, which boasts more than 50 organic wines 50 on their wine list.

 The Stockbridge bar, which has just been awarded The List’s Best New Bar Award, opened in summer 2016 by brothers Graeme and Rory Sutherland, with the aim of standing out from competition due to its vast selection of biodynamic and organic wines.

The brothers quoted “The natural wine movement is one that we’ve witnessed spread from London all across the UK.  To be able to bring it to Scotland and generate interest and excitement in it is brilliant to see. The idea came out of a passion for artisan producers and wines and we’re very proud of the support that we’ve been able to give them and the relationships we’ve built. Winning this award is just the cherry on the top to what has been a fantastic first year in business.”

The bar recently underwent a refurbishment to put the official Good Brothers stamp on it through minimalistic design.  The menu has also been recently revised and now offers small plates for sharing, channelling the relaxed atmosphere of a continental wine bar.

A number of top wine producers are now set to host tasting evenings at the bar.

Good Brothers Wine Bar

Picture - courtesy of TSPL 

January winners

CONGRATULATIONS to all our January winners as can be viewed here in our 'Win over £1,000 worth of prizes' ... if you weren't a lucky winner, we still have some fantastic OFFERS as detailed on here. Thank you to everyone who entered and to to all the businesses for their fantastic prizes.

I am delighted with bowl I won from Adam Pottery in your recent competition! What a treat.

It’s not like me to win anything, I love the earrings from Sheila Fleet. 

Wednesday is off to the best of start winning a book voucher for Golden Hare.
— Just some of the quotes from the winners.

SugaRush lands in central Stockbridge

A modern, stylish and unique confectionery retail shop opened in Stockbridge, Edinburgh, in Jan 2017.  Offering many exciting product lines such as;

  • Gourmet Chocolate
  • Retro Sweets
  • Luxury Pick 'n' Mix
  • Gluten-free
  • Sugar-free
  • Mystery boxes

In addition to rare imported treats from around the world.  Click here for more info. 

SugarRush Logo

 

 

Edinburgh's First 'DRY' Bar pops up in Stockbridge

FOR some, the idea of a night out with no alcohol is ludicrous. But in Stockbridge, DRY Edinburgh is on a mission to prove you don’t need beer or wine to have a good time – all you need is great company.

Among birch trees, red walls and oriental decor, around 100 people gathered for the opening of the Capital’s first alcohol-free bar on 17 Jan 2016. The “bar”, on North West Circus Place, offers customers a large range of mocktails, alcohol-free craft beers, wine and spirits. The owners have organised a programme of entertainment including quiz nights, musical performances and table tennis leagues. Jamie Walker, 48-year-old father-of-four from the city’s New Town, who previously owned the Adelphi Whisky company came up with the idea for the unique venture after spending several years in South Africa rehabilitation after he developed a drinking problem, he moved to Cape Town for rehabilitation.

Jamie has now been 'dry' for 13 years and wants to use his experience to show others alcohol is not an essential element to a good night out. He said: “The philosophy behind DRY is that it is possible to go out and have a grown-up fun evening in an alcohol-free environment.

“Our customers don’t need to feel pressured into drinking alcohol. We don’t want to
create a virtuous, hair-shirt experience; but rather a relaxed vibe where you can meet friends and share delicious food, drink and good conversation.” Jamie and his childhood friend, Tertia Bailey, set up DRY in response to a trend for non-alcoholic beverages among increasingly health-conscious millennials.

Recent research by brewing giant ABInbev found that 41% of young people are pursuing a healthier lifestyle by actively cutting down on alcohol. Some of the beers on offer include well known brands such as Becks Blue and Carlsberg. A selection of alcohol free ciders, including Kopparberg, and wines are also on offer. Jamie added: “We were really pleased with our opening night – we had a fantastic turnout. “We hope to attract all ages of people. We are proud to be the first bar of this kind in the city.”

DRY Edinburgh