Colinton Community Conservation Trust

To preserve for the benefit of the people of Colinton, the natural and cultural heritage that exists in and around Colinton in land of particular beauty and environmental or recreational value or buildings and structures of historical, architectural or constructional interest.

The Colinton Community Conservation Trust, Edinburgh is a registered Scottish Charity that was founded in 2000. It is also a Limited Company by Guarantee in Scotland.

The initial aim of the Trust was to buy the Dreghorn polofield, to secure it in perpetuity for the local community, as an amenity open space. Sadly this bid was unsuccessful, and housing development started there in 2014. Not withstanding its origins, the Trust was deliberately given a wide ranging objective to preserve the natural and cultural heritage in and around Colinton.

Today, the Trust seeks to improve the local environment in partnership with other local organisations. The emphasis is upon delivering high quality conservation projects on the ground. As a charitable organisation, the Trust can draw funds from the Lottery, charitable trusts and government agencies to tackle conservation projects in and around Colinton.

Colinton Triangle
The first major project for the Trust was the construction of a new footpath, at an easy gradient, through a public garden in the heart of the village. This also included the construction of a belvedere, and a redesign of the planting within the garden area. This was followed by floodlighting work around the tall sycamore tree in the centre of the village.

Phoebe Traquair Railings
The second major project for the trust was the restoration of ornamental metal railings at the foot of Bridge Road. The railings were designed by Phoebe Anna Traquair in 1924 with the help of Sir Frank Mears. Phoebe, a Colintonian, was one of the leading artists of the Arts and Crafts Movement in Scotland and the first woman to be elected an honourable member of the Royal Scottish Academy. These railings are listed by Historic Environment Scotland.

The Long Steps
The Long Steps from Bridge Road by the Colinton Inn to the foot of Spylaw Street had been neglected for many years. The Trust undertook the replanting of the garden area alongside the steps, to brighten and tidy up the area. It is hoped that the Council will repair the railings and the steps.

Statue of Robert Louis Stevenson as a boy
To celebrate RLS's connections with Colinton, the Trust commissioned a bronze statue of RLS as a boy and had it placed in the small garden in front of the Parish Church. The statue was unveiled on 26th October 2013 by the author Ian Rankin, a fan of Robert Louis Stevenson's works.

A walk with Robert Louis Stevenson
To celebrate RLS's connections with Colinton, the Trust has created a poetry trail: A walk with Robert Louis Stevenson. This was opened on 25th October 2014. At the top of the Long Steps an ornamental steel arch marks the start of the walk. This is followed by a set of plaques with poems from A Child's Garden of Verses on the wall alongside the Long Steps, in the Swing Café (part of Colinton Parish Church), and in Dell Road. An Educational Resource has been written to accompany the walk.

Interpretation and public artwork
In addition to restoring the Triangle garden with its New Drovers Path, an important aspect is also to interpret and display phases of Colinton's rich history. The public artwork comprises of an illustrated timeline of aspects of Colinton's history integrated into new ornamental railings along the Woodhall Road boundary of the Triangle garden and poetry displayed at the belvedere.

If you would like to join or support the Trust or any of its projects, please send a membership application form and/or a donation to the Trust at:

Honorary Treasurer
Colinton Community Conservation Trust
42 Pentland Avenue
EH13 0HY