Edinburgh (Moodle Moot)


I went to Edinburgh for a conference (the 2014 UK Moodle Moot, to be precise - not quite as Tolkienesque as the name, since it’s about software for running educational web sites). There wasn’t a great deal of spare time for taking photos, but I managed a few anyway, so here they are.


I did some work on the (very pleasant) train ride direct to Edinburgh, and arrived in reasonable time so that after I'd checked in at the hotel there was still a little of the afternoon remaining.

I went for a short walk with no plans in mind. From the main road near the hotel, I spotted a very large chimney and simply walked in that direction.

Chimney, which (it turns out) is beside Haymarket station.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Tramlines near Haymarket. The infamous trams were running, but without passengers.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Chimney reflected.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Stairs to a basement room in a road near the hotel.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200

Tuesday morning

The conference organisers had helpfully selected a venue two miles from the official hotel. This gave me a good reason to walk through a fair chunk of picturesque south-west Edinburgh several times.

(By the way, the venue was actually very nice: the Corn Exchange. I did appreciate the old plaque informing us that it consisted of slaughterhouses and a market. Nobody actually tried to slaughter me at any point.)

Taking main roads, there were two plausible routes. On Tuesday I went by Dalry Road and Slateford Road. Near the start, a slight diversion took me closer to yesterday’s chimney - it seems to be part of an old distillery, now mainly demolished for housing.

Chimney, yellow garage, blue doors.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Early morning sun (not a sight I regularly see), building shadows, angled sign.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Advertising tree branches. (Also TASK BEEFY 13.)
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Van man, by the railway near Slateford.
1/1000 at f8, 23mm, ISO200

Tuesday afternoon

Back the same way, this time accompanied by my colleague Tim (not pictured; apologies to him for stopping and taking photos all the time).

Yellow corner with traffic light.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200

Tuesday evening

A fancy meal had been laid on for us at the ‘Our Dynamic Earth’ exhibition, near the Scottish Parliament and Arthur’s Seat.

Salisbury Crags between a couple of buildings.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200

The exhibition looks pretty neat (they have a really big block of ice which you can touch, for instance) although we didn’t get to see much of it. After the meal (vegetarian main course: terrible; pudding: pretty good) and a few short speeches, some entertainment had been threatened. I escaped from the building and picked up a bag of crisps and a chocolate bar, then walked back to the hotel.

What’s the only thing worse than 26 bagpipe makers?
1/15 at f2, 23mm, ISO1600
Waverley Station from the bridge above the gorge.
1/2 at f5.6, 23mm, ISO1600
Church and fancy pub (?) near the hotel.
1/30 at f2.8, 23mm, ISO800


Second and last day of the main conference. I walked there and back along Dalry Road as before, and then Gorgie Road - not quite as direct, but I wanted a change.

Gardens (which didn’t appear to be open to the public) by hotel.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200
Palmerston Place Church, with nice red doors.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′51″N 3°12′56″W
Just somebody’s house. Nice colour scheme, though.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′23″N 3°13′32″W

Wednesday afternoon

View from Gorgie Road.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′7″N 3°14′30″W
Sign: ‘Please don't leave without collecting your pink advice note from the office’.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′9″N 3°14′30″W

I took a slight detour by an overhead railway line to have a look at a distillery and a factory which, apparently, is the world’s leading manufacturer of opiate alkaloids. These are right next to a football stadium, so you can get your sport, drink, and drugs within a few hundred metres.

Bridge carrying that railway line.
1/1000 at f2.8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′19″N 3°14′15″W
Bellpulls. The inhabitants appear to be Scots, except D Melville who’s Australian.
1/250 at f5.6, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′15″N 3°14′1″W
Sloping basement window by pavement.
1/60 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′25″N 3°13′29″W

Wednesday evening

I thought it would be nice to take a walk around the castle area, since I hadn’t done much tourist stuff.

Wall and building below castle.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′50″N 3°12′3″W
Street electrics.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′49″N 3°11′55″W
Nice yard.
1/125 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′49″N 3°11′53″W
Steps up to castle; yellow container.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′53″N 3°11′46″W
Car park and castle.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′55″N 3°11′47″W
City view and castle.
1/500 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°56′54″N 3°11′49″W
Railway tracks near sunset.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200 55°57′3″N 3°11′46″W

And finally

I had quite a nice hotel room on the fourth floor with a balcony. (Great views and good exercise - the lift didn’t work.) Here are a couple of views from it, on Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

Castle in distance.
1/8 at f2.8, 23mm, ISO400
Buildings opposite; Scottish flag.
1/250 at f8, 23mm, ISO200

The actual conference ended with a developer meeting on Thursday. I got a rather late train back to Milton Keynes and then walked home through the city at one in the morning. Which was also interesting, but I didn’t take any pictures, so this is all!

All images © Samuel Marshall. All rights reserved.