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Colonial Community

Dotted around Edinburgh are more than half-a-dozen unique neighbourhoods built primarily during the latter half of the 19th century. Instantly recognisable thanks to their parallel lines of distinctive two-story buildings, usually with external staircases leading to the ‘Upper’ flats, these ‘Colony’ homes were originally built to provide affordable, quality housing for the city’s artisan working […]

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Solar Bear break new ground with a production of Caryl Churchill’s ‘Love and Information’

                         A new touring production of Caryl Churchill’s Love and Information is an excellent showcase for its young cast from the UK’s only performance degree for D/deaf actors at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, in collaboration with leading Scottish company Solar Bear. Review by Paul F […]

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Living History from Underwater

                         Most people’s idea of an archaeologist is unlikely to have them wearing diving gear, but Dr Nicholas “Nick” Dixon OBE would beg to disagree. “Scotland has an immensely rich underwater heritage,” he insists. “It is often with regret that I have concentrated my efforts in […]

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Putting Family History on the Map

Historic maps can help you better understand the lives of your ancestors, and can even clear up some mysteries, explains Paul F Cockburn. Some 14,000 years ago, in what is now Abauntz in the Navarra region of northern Spain, an unknown man or woman picked up a stone tablet and began to carve onto its […]

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A Rollicking Adventure

           It may be hindsight, but some writers appear destined to write particular books. Take, for example, Robert J Harris and his new novel The Thirty-One Kings, which brings together several of Scottish author John Buchan’s most popular characters—including Richard Hannay of The Thirty-Nine Steps—in a new adventure set during the early part of […]

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Irvine Welsh: Classic Tales and New Directions

          For a writer who had three shows running during this year’s 70th anniversary Edinburgh Festival Fringe, theatre didn’t feature that much in his life when Leith-born Irvine Welsh was growing up. “Apart from panto at the King’s Theatre—Stanley Baxter, Ronnie Corbett and all that—it was never a big thing for me,” he says. […]

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Cautious Optimism for the Environment Post-Brexit

One of Scotland’s best-known naturalists and conservationists is “quietly confident” that Brexit won’t automatically lead to declining environmental standards—as long as we’re careful. Speaking at the Edinburgh International Book Festival to promote his new memoirs, Sir John Lister-Kaye admitted to being worried about the situation but also thought “it might be quite healthy”. “What’s happened […]

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