Image courtesy of OSP Archive

Wed 9th December at 6.30pm

Serenity Café, 8 Jackson’s Entry, The Tun, Edinburgh

In 1906, a one of Britain’s first Free Kindergartens, the St Saviour’s Child Garden, was opened in premises at Brown’s Close, Canongate. Intended as ‘a contribution to the solution of the slum problem in Edinburgh,’ it formed part of a broader programme of social reform enacted by the Episcopal church of Old St Paul’s, and was run by an energetic young Englishwoman, Lileen Hardy. This talk will explore Hardy’s work at the kindergarten, its connections to Old St Paul’s, and more particularly what it tells us about the contributions made by women to the improvement of living conditions in Edinburgh’s slums.

Elizabeth Darling is Reader in Architectural History at Oxford Brookes University. The project from which this paper arises forms part of her work on the nature of women’s contribution to the reform and transformation of urban environments from the 1890s to the 1950s. Key publications include Women and the Making of Built Space in England, 1870-1950 (co-edited with Lesley Whitworth, published by Ashgate, 2007) and a contribution to the new volume of The Evergreen, ‘A World in Action: Women’s Work and Children’s Work in the Canongate’s St Saviour’s Child Garden, 1906-1914.’

















The Evergreen: A New Season in the North, Volume 2

The Evergreen revisits a 400-year old tradition that sparked the Evergreen anthologies of Allan Ramsay and Patrick Geddes, inspiring a civic and cultural revival within Edinburgh and beyond.

Special Price £10


The city is ceaselessly working, but who is it working for?

Who is more outstanding in his field than James Kelman? But, in The Evergreen he’s now standing outside his field looking in. Around town, Elizabeth Darling hears the sounds of children at play in the Canongate – from over a hundred years ago. Kirsti Wishart blasts us into the future with an amazing cohort of untraditional superheroes, many of whom suffer from traditional Scottish syndromes! Lucy Ellmann performs another of her daring rescues – this time it’s the baleful, beleaguered shopgirls of Edinburgh who are swept to safety, with morally instructive pictures by Diana Hope.

Petra Reid takes up Lucky Spence’s tale (and cause) where she left it off. Not much has changed for Edinburgh’s filles de joie in three hundred years. Kenny Munro revels in discoveries in old footage of The Honest Toun, while Tom Hubbard and Lou Dear think furiously about a subject close to our hearts: the university, and how it might one day become something useful. Jim Gilchrist revisits a Grassmarket almost unbelievable today, an arcadia of song and gelato.

Peter Burnett goes behind the scenes of our wonderful world of arts festivals and finds something very, very nasty. Joyce Guthrie witnesses a messy death on Lothian Road. Turns out it’s someone nobody knows, a tourist gone astray. David Wheatley rolls up his sleeves and gets to grips with Doric, celebrating our own Robert Fergusson into the bargain. Meanwhile, Robert Davies turns a very baffled lens on those who have found themselves high and dry in Granton, and poets Neil C Young and Eddie Gibbons get their hands grubby.

But The Evergreen gets out in the world, too: Paul Furneaux takes us on an exquisite visual journey from Aberdeen to Tokyo to Edinburgh, by way of a studio in flames. Brian McLaughlin sends us a timely Letter from Barcelona: he’s seen the future of its Old Town and … OMG it’s us! Ali Millar wonders if any of this is worth it. And from the West Port, Ken Crump writes that there’s some mighty pretty country out there.


To purcha
se by post send £10 (cheques made payable to The Edinburgh Old Town Develpment Trust) for each copy you wish, to the following address:

    The Word Bank


    8 Jackson's Entry

    EH8 8PJ

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The Evergreen is Supported by:








saltire society scotland




Edinburgh World Heritage







You are cordially invited to readings from the second of the four-volume The Evergreen: A New Season in the North.

The launch will be held on Wednesday 2nd December at 7PM at The Studio, Augustine United Church, George IV Bridge.


The Evergreen is Supported by: