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About the City with

Peter Bourhill

Fly away home! A sneak peek of the restoration of Edinburgh’s much-loved Elm Row pigeons has been revealed ahead of their return to the street later this year. The public ar tworks, created by sculptor Shona Kinloch, were first removed during the original tram project in 2006. Now, as par t of Trams to Newhaven, the seven bronze birds are being refurbished or completely recast before their return home. Specialists from Powderhall Bronze have been renovating, sandblasting and applying ‘patina’, which creates the familiar green colouring, to the existing statues, as well as casting three brand new pigeons. This has involved making wax replicas using the original moulds for the sculptures, before pouring in molten metal to produce a finished product. The plan is to return the pigeons to Elm Row during the summer, alongside the London Road Pillar Clock, which is currently being refurbished by clockmaker Smiths of Derby.

A refurbished pigeon, before patina is applied to give it a green colour

“A quietly powerful image.”

The Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year 2020 is Edinburgh based nature photographer Charles Everitt. His image Taking Root won the Scottish Botanical category before being chosen by the judges as the overall winner. Charles’s said: “While walking in a wooded area along the banks of the Water of Leith, I noticed a pocket of Pink purslane rooted in the base of a tree beside the river. I returned the next day and was blessed with dappled sunlight so just needed to wait until the flowers became illuminated.”

Judge Niall Ir vine said: “This image draws you in.The purslane is nestled in its own miniature landscape of the old tree roots, highlighted by that wonderful dappled light. It takes sensitive observation to see the potential in this plant growing wild. Charles has distilled its story into a quietly powerful image.”

Another Edinburgh photographer, Anthony

Robson, was awarded 2nd place in the Scottish Landscape - Urban Greenspace category and 3rd place in the Scottish Wildlife Portrait category, while Edinburgh College student Stephen Rodger won 2nd place in the Student category. All winning images can be viewed at:

Taking Root © Charles Everitt

EdinburghLife May/June 2021 4

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