'And finally, not everyone’s being doing topical. In fact, here’s the rather lovely 6 Oxgangs Avenue devoted to the history of the development of the area, this week highlighting how the block of flats came into being. Could have been prompted by Who do you think you are? Or just a timely reminder that not everything worth blogging about is in the here and now.'

Kate Higgins, Scottish Roundup 26/08/2012

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Buses Good, Bad and Mysterious (2)-The Number 27

Of the buses that serviced Oxgangs, perhaps the loveliest route was the Number 27. It was always worth sitting upstairs to take in the views, despite the smoke!

The Number 27 wound its way down Craiglockhart, past Meggetland and the Union Canal, and on through the stone built houses at Polwarth; and then on through Tollcross to George IV Bridge and down The Mound with its majestic view over Princes Street and beyond to the Forth and the Highlands to the north; and then down Dundas Street and along Inverleith Row and the Royal Botanic Gardens. The Gardens were as far as we ever went for very occasional picnics. The bus of course went further to Silverknowes-were any members of The Stair adventurous enough to have travelled that far for a family outing to the sea?

I was on the Number 27 regularly for my first two years at Boroughmuir School where I was at the Junior School which was located at West Bryson Road; although on occasions we might have to walk as a class snake like to the main school at Viewforth for science lessons.

The Number 27 always felt a safe bus to be on. Mike Scott of The Waterboys speaks eloquently of buses-I recall him saying what a lovely bus the Number 23 was-essentially it was a sister bus to the Number 27, but instead of taking in the working class area of Oxgangs, it finished its terminus at Balcarres Street, Morningside. Scott mentions the bus in the song Edinburgh Castle.

I jumped on a bus 
a trusty number 23

to the Royal Botanical Gardens

where a ghost was calling me

I saw a brace of weeping willows,

a burnt and withered land

I saw a man and a little boy
holding hands

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