Leith Botanical Gardens.

The Botanical Cottage

The Botanical Cottage

A little snippet I accidentally came across about the botanic cottage which is situated in Leith walk and was originally part of the city’s first botanic Gardens, which I presume must have been behind Leith walk.  It appears that the friends of Hopetoun Crescent Garden having already been given a grant of £48,500 to research the buildings past, now want more cash from the lottery to dismantle it and move it to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Inverleith.  Now while I can only applaud the wish to save this cottage I do feel that as it is part of Leith perhaps it would be a better idea to keep the building in Leith.  Some time ago there was an idea muted to create a mini botanical garden at St John’s place on the edge of Leith links where the old cinder football pitch is at present.  (The white building that used to be a public convenience and is now used as a changing room can be seen there). If this building has genuine historic value why move it from Leith?  Why not make it the centrepiece of one of the green spaces we are promised are going to be created around Leith, part of the coastal promenade or a centrepiece in one of the new Plazas to be built in the docks. Perhaps this is simply another case of taking from Leith instead of giving to Leith.  If anyone has any other ideas about a use of this historic building (it must be historic after all the lottery gave £48,500 to research its past), I would love to hear about them.  Surely we could make good use of this building who knows perhaps even as a historic Gardening Museum as it seems Leith is not thought to be deserving of any other sort of museum.

Reaction to propose route and timetable changes Lothian buses.

Below are that timetable and route changes proposed by Lothian buses to come into force on October 5th. There will of course be outraged protests from the areas that will lose a bus service, most of these areas appear to be in the more deprived areas of the city and it seems to be a great shame that those with the least alternatives to bus travel should have to bear the brunt of the cuts. Unusually I find myself in the position of almost trusting the management of Lothian buses, who have after all engineered a 40% rise in passenger numbers over the last few years and kept prices an affordable level. I have yet to hear of a scandal involving huge bonus payments to the management team for underachievement, on the contrary they have consistently won awards from their peers and accolades amongst the punters for a successful and popular service. It comes as a real shock in other towns when you are asked to pay three, four, five pounds, for a single bus journey (Bournemouth) and then you suddenly realise after a night on the town your only option is a taxi, which are rarer than hen’s teeth, never mind the expense.

So what should our reaction as users of the service be to these changes?

Firstly the environment which is forcing these changes on Lothian buses was not created by any decisions they were responsible for. The price of diesel has risen 42% in the last three months, the tram works were a political decision which has led to the longer journey times, confusion and frustration. Both these major contributing factors were totally outwith the control of Lothian buses.

So what should we do? If we want to keep the best bus service in the country and I would suggest probably the best transport management team, we should try to support them by continuing to use the buses, and indeed if at all possible use them more. These decisions are about revenue and of course the fact that these particular routes are Council subsidised. Lothian buses have simplified, expanded and improved the bus service in Edinburgh perhaps it’s time to show some solidarity with our bus company through these difficult times. Who knows a small rise in usage may tip the balance and save those routes scheduled for closure.

Lothian Buses Service Changes

Lothian Buses Service Changes 5 October 2008

Withdrawn:

13 Blackhall – City Centre – Lochend

20 Wester Hailes – Stenhouse – Chesser Circle

60 Dumbiedykes – Bristo Place

N11 Ocean Terminal – City Centre – Ferniehill

N27 Muirhouse – City Centre – Hunter’s Tryst

Withdrawn Monday to Friday mornings (will still run Saturday and Sunday mornings):

N8 Silverknowes – City Centre – Ferniehill (see note below)

N16 City Centre – Torphin

N26 Clerwood – City Centre – Port Seton

N30 Wester Hailes – City Centre – Musselburgh

N44 Balerno – City Centre – Tranent

Other major changes:

12 Leith Links – King’s Road section withdrawn

18 Will run Monday to Friday peak periods only

24 City Centre – Royal Infirmary

evening frequency becomes hourly

32 Will run Monday to Friday peak periods only

Replaced between Wester Hailes and Drumbrae by alteration to Service 21

42 Bristo Place – King’s Road section withdrawn evenings and Sundays

N8 Silverknowes – City Centre – Ferniehill

Monday to Friday morning journeys withdrawn

On Saturday and Sunday mornings will run between Silverknowes and City Centre

N31 East Craigs – City Centre – Mayfield

East Craigs – City Centre and Cockpen – Mayfield sections withdrawn

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