Baird Road, Ratho – Ink/Pencil in a Moleskine Sketchbook

A good time, yesterday. The rain relented long enough to spend an hour, sitting by the edge of the canal, sketching. This is a view I have never attempted before. Visitors to our village always try to paint/photograph the bridge and the Bridge Inn. If you look at my post, dated 10th July 2008, you can see the general layout. I sat under the tree, on the right hand side of last year’s picture, looking across the canal towards the old cottages in Baird Road. This road is named after Hugh Baird who designed the Union Canal which was eventually completed in 1822. These cottages have been greatly modernised. When they were built they had no running water or electricity, although they probably had gas as there was a gasworks to the left of this scene. In fact the canal was used to transport coal from the West Lothian coal mines to Edinburgh and some of it was landed at this very spot to be refined into gas. One old photograph shows a lady drawing water from a stand pump located in the street. I felt that I was sketching a piece of history.