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Exhibition details for 43670 - St Leonard's Improvement Scheme
St Leonard's Improvement Scheme
Uploaded by Janette Gollan
contains 243 images
St Leonard's Improvement Scheme
The early twentieth century saw a growing concern with the living conditions of many of Edinburgh's lower classes. From the 1920s onwards the Burgh Engineer's Department carried out many photographic surveys of deprived areas of the city, creating both a record of what was there and a basis for the creation of new housing. A survey of the St Leonard's area of Edinburgh was carried out by Edinburgh Council between 1927-29 in advance of the demolition and reconstruction of much of the area.

The Edinburgh and Scottish Collection has volumes of photographs taken prior to reconstruction which covers areas such as Potterrow, Dumbiedykes, West Crosscauseway and the Pleasance. Although the images were taken to record the state of the housing, they are populated by the inhabitants of the Southside, who are captured going about their daily business of shopping, working and leaning out of windows to watch the world go by. Many of the local businesses are also represented with a wide array including confectioners, hairdressers and butchers shops, all decorated with a fascinating range of advertisements.