Ding dong merrily on high

The 3rd Leith Lifeboys polish their tubular bell ringing performance
The 3rd Leith Lifeboys polish their tubular bell ringing performance
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THE focus of the faces of these Lifeboys was nothing but intent as they took their teacher’s lead in what was one of the final rehearsals for a carol concert at the Usher Hall.

It was December 20, 1962 and the youngsters – members of the 3rd Leith Lifeboys – were practising their tubular bell ringing at Hermitage Park School, ahead of the big event on Christmas Eve.

Canongate Church choirboys singing carols in 1962

Canongate Church choirboys singing carols in 1962

If their routine was anything as ship-shape as their uniforms, the concert would undoubtedly have gone well.

Much like this week’s performance at the Victoria Manor Care Home, in Leith, where the cast of Wicked – currently at the Playhouse – led a sing-a-long for staff and residents.

The stars from the acclaimed musical performed timely Christmas carols, with care home manager Lindsay McCulloch describing it as no “everyday occurrence”.

Back in December 1978, the star of the show at one Christmas carol concert was not a singing celebrity but rather a humble turkey, presented to the Salvation Army for its musical efforts at Inverleith Terrace.

RC Ogilvie Club members carol singing at The Mound

RC Ogilvie Club members carol singing at The Mound

The band stood at its junction with Summer Place, braving the winter chills to bring a little festive cheer to passers-by. It was outside Charles Wilson the butchers, with their efforts impressing shop assistant Dawson McCready so much that he made the rather large donation.

There was not a turkey in sight when these carol singers above took to The Mound–- and by the looks of it not a bum note. The women from the RC Ogilvie Club look like they had everything well under control as they thrilled crowds in December 1962, despite some unwelcome downpours and chilly blasts.

An assistant from Charles Wilson' s butcher shop presents a couple of turkeys to the Salvation Army playing Christmas carols

An assistant from Charles Wilson' s butcher shop presents a couple of turkeys to the Salvation Army playing Christmas carols