Bruntsfield Links – Watercolour/Inktense on an A4 Watercolour Moleskine

There are two great open spaces towards the south side of Edinburgh. These are The Meadows and Bruntsfield Links. They are separated by Melville Drive which joins the Tollcross area to the extension of the “Bridges” heading south thus making this one of the busiest places in the city. Despite this, the two green spaces are oasis’ of peace. Every city needs these “lungs” and this area compares well with St Stephens Green in Dublin or some of the great London Parks. Bruntsfield was, in the time of David 1st, part of the Boroughmuir, a large wooded area. It was gifted to the city by this king. These days nothing remains of this early forest but some of today’s trees are quite spectacular. It is unfortunate that, like many other areas in the Northern hemisphere, many of the fine elms are dying and are gradually being cut down in an effort to minimise the spread of Dutch Elm Disease.

This scene shows Barclay Church, built with a legacy of £10,000 in 1864 from Miss Mary Barclay. In front of the church the green area is used by a “Short Golf Course” – locally known as a “Pitch and Putt” course. It’s free to use and is kept in immaculate condition by the City Parks’ Department. One of the Capital’s private courses, situated to the north of Edinburgh is also called “Bruntsfield” which causes some confusion with visitors. Don’t turn up at this one expecting a free game of golf.