Edinburgh Self-Catering Holiday Apartments : News & Offers
Edinburgh Old Town Apartments
We have produced the following to give you a quick feel to the history of Edinburgh`s Historic Old Town where our apartment is situated.
Over 24,000 people lived in the old town during the mid 1700s with people of all classes living together. The buildings on the Royal Mile were inhabited by rich and poor alike until the development of the New Town began. Following the establishment of the New Town the Old Town was then left with the an increasing population of poor people and became a haven for poor living standards, disease and crime.
The overcrowding in the limited space of the Old Town led to buildings being built upwards. That's how medieval Edinburgh got its first tall buildings which could be 6, 7 or even 8 storeys high. It was often the case that as they were built so closely together that people on the upper floors could shake hands with neighbours on the other side of the close or wynd.
Sanitary conditions were also very poor with open foul drainage running between the narrow streets and waste water and other "matters" were hurled by servants from the windows of the tall tenements (after ten o`clock) to the streets below with the call of "gardyloo", a warning that was often heard too late !
The lower floors of the buildings were normally inhabited by merchants who had the shops below, the middle floors by the middle classes such as dentists, doctors and those striving to futher themselves up the legal profession, and at the very top floors you would find the very poorest of Edinburgh folk.
The Old Town today is a World Heritage Site thanks to its historic buildings and rich cultural character. Buildings have been refurbished and turned into well kept dwellings and the Old Town now has a vibrant and interesting community. Cafe culture and small designer shops mix happily with the popular tartan gift shops with their romantic scottish music attracting you in.
Ghosts and stories of the past still haunt the narrow winding streets and you can sign onto various walking tours that will take you down the darkest cobbled closes of Edinburgh`s old town where a surprise or two still awaits !
The Old Town is also home to Edinburgh's most interesting graveyard. Greyfriars Kirkyard ("kirk" being the scottish term for a church) is a peaceful place, where people come to relax at lunchtime and browse the ancient tombs. Greyfriars is also well known for the story of two of it`s most famous inhabitants, Burke and Hare, the bodysnatchers.
Possibly better known and certainly more filmatic is the story of the loyal wee dog, Greyfriars Bobby who slept on the grave of his master for many years after his death. A statue of this famous wee dog is situated on tne main street outside the Kirkyard.
We have a number of information books and tourism leaflets in our Pillow Stops apartments that will give you a real feel to the atmosphere and character of Old Town, Edinburgh. We hope we have given you a small flavour of what awaits !