a city of contrasts


Every city has these contrasts. Where old is juxtaposed with new. But this is one of the things that feels most striking about Edinburgh. From the medieval Old Town to the Georgian New Town, both claiming the heart of the city geographically yet both so very different in form.

So this is part two of Edinburgh in black and white. Old Town, New Town, Dean Village, Holyrood. Grand, compact, Georgian, and the very occasional slice of contemporary.

See anyone?

I’m always interested to see how new buildings are eased into urban sites. I say ‘eased’, but clearly, over the years, or decades, some buildings have appeared that are fighting with their environment. Bland buildings you barely register when passing. But then you find architecture that reacts to its surroundings, bold yet also sympathetic in intention, scale and materials. And this house - designed by architect Richard Murphy as his own home - is a favourite of mine. I watched it being built (it’s close to my old flat) and subsequently wrote about it. It’s a punctuation point at the end of this Georgian terrace, and a fascinating house internally.

This mews development tucked away in Dublin Street Lane is another favourite. Again it was designed by Richard Murphy Architects, and completed in 2000.


Stockbridge is one of my favourite parts of the city. Expect great cafés - like Cowan & Sons on the previous two pages, and Artisan Roast a few pages on - and nice shops to mooch around in. It’s very dog-friendly - most of the bars, cafés and shops here welcome in canine companions - with a buzzing Sunday market and a leafy walk along the Water of Leith for when you want to escape.



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  • finknottle

    I must admit, I do like the older houses more.... But times are changing, right?

  • coppernotes

    They are indeed @finknottle and great, interesting new architecture is always welcome. It’s the bland and mediocre stuff that gets built that I mind... but I enjoy seeing good contemporary architecture alongside period.

  • mdiepraam

    Some epic shots, and nicely told! 😎✨👌🏽

  • coppernotes

    Thank you @mdiepraam 🙏🏻 It was really cool to revisit these photos and give them a fresh edit - everything felt different in b+w. ☺️

  • coppernotes

    @mombo part two! ☺️

  • coppernotes

    Thank you @Steller 🙌🏻✨🖤

  • travelswmyphone

    What a lovely set, I also love Richard Murphy’s house. Watched it being built too as I used to go to yoga opposite

  • coppernotes

    Ah yes, didn’t know you went to that studio on Forth Street. It’s just such an interesting house - complex in structure but also just a really lovely space in the volume and light and that great indoor-outdoor flow onto the terrace. @travelswmyphone

  • coppernotes

    Oh @travelswmyphone and thank you for the share!

  • travelswmyphone

    Yes it’s a fascinating building, like a kind of organism the way it folds. I really miss Stacey’s yoga bit it just doesn’t fit with my mad commute/exhaustion just now


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