Art or Vandalism?

Graffiti adorns dull corners of Edinburgh, bringing colour to brick walls, doors and alleyways. EN4 News photographer Maria Gran explored some well-known graffiti spots in the city in an attempt to find out if this is all accessible art, or simply distasteful markings.

The adventure begins in the Innocent railway tunnel in Newington, now a cycle and footpath frequently used by the population.


Credit: Maria Gran


“Let’s Do Something Wrong” Credit: Maria Gran


“Before toast was invented, did people still smell toast when having a stroke?” Credit: Maria Gran


Credit: Maria Gran

Maria also checked out Edinburgh’s Cowgate, an area frequented by party-goers and students, as well as lots of graffiti artists


Credit: Maria Gran


Credit: Maria Gran

The final spot is Marine Parade Graffiti Wall in Newhaven. This wall features 330 metres of legal graffiti from artists both from Scotland and overseas.


Credit: Maria Gran


A portrait of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards. Credit: Maria Gran


Credit: Maria Gran


Credit: Maria Gran


‘Edina! Scotia’s darling seat!’ A Burns tour through Edinburgh

Robert Burns (1759 to 1796) is usually associated with the west of Scotland, however, the national poet also left his mark in the capital. 



The Principle Hotel


The Principle Hotel on George Street was originally several large townhouses, owned by some of Edinburgh’s richest families such as the Ferriers. Wealthy lawyer James Ferrier liked to be entertained by the literary talents of Scotland, so he invited Burns to stay. Soon Burns took a liking to James’ eldest daughter. She was already married, however, this did not phase Burns, who expressed his feelings in ‘To Miss Ferrier’.


The Burns Monument – Regent Road


The Burns Monument is can be found on Regent Road, at the southern foot of Calton Hill, overlooking Arthur’s seat in Holyrood Park. The circular temple is typical of the Georgian era in Edinburgh, bringing you right back to 1831, the year it was built. Originally it was the home of a white marble statue of Burns – which can now be found in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.


A statue of Robert Burns – Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Credits Lauren Walker EN4 News

St Giles’ Cathedral, on the Royal Mile, has a beautiful stained glass window to honour Burns. The window is split into three segments, each dedicated to an aspect of Burns’ life.

The first represents his agricultural background, the second his intellectual abilities, the third his contribution to Scottish culture.


Plaque on Lady Stair’s Close


Further up the Royal Mile you can find Lady Stair’s Close. Above the entrance, a plaque marks Burns’s first stay in Edinburgh in 1786, when it was still Baxter’s Place.

His landlady Mrs Carfrae is said to have been unamused by Burns’ debauchery.

Burns House

Lady Stair’s Close


For those interested in the three most prominent historical writers of Scotland — Robert Burns, Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson — walk further down the Lady Stair’s Close to The Writers’ Museum.


Photos by Iona Young for EN4 News



Scotland’s Monochrome ‘Route 66’

Winding the weathered tarmac, slithering through thick carpeted heathery glens’…leaving your eyes wondering which way to look, the landscape changes from moment to moment, large shadows follow you along the predetermined route for miles, almost to the point of prediction, finally breaking to expose a glistening postcard scene….this is the west coast of Scotland, or at least a small section of it on the new tourist pilgrimage, the ‘West Coast 500’.


These images make up a snapshot of the first stage that, in summer, sees campervans and cyclists swell the roads. Inverness to Applecross consists of famous hairpin bends that descend down almost hand drawn like roads and possesses long stretches of barren panoramas that have hidden secrets that are right in front of you. This essay hopes to illustrate that raw attachment to the environment that we have and sometimes seek… you just need to take time to look and feel it.

Glen Docherty – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Heaven

Bellow Beinn Eighe – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Bay

Salmon Farm in Upper Loch Torridon – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

Ruadh-stac Mor Beinn Eighe – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Night Time Loch

View of Shieldaig – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Roof

Tin Roof with View of Loch Sheildaig – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Sky Takeover

Climbing Higher Loch Sheildaig – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Eggs etc...

‘For Sale Eggs, Hats Etc…’ – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Bealach

BEALACH NA BÀ, WESTER ROSS,- Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

B&W Shadow

BEALACH NA BÀ, WESTER ROSS – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

STAC POLLAIDH, WESTER ROSS – Photo (Ross Cowper-Fraser)

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