Nostalgia: Muirhouse through the years

Norma Dickson and her son walk through a building site in Muirhouse in 1964; below, visitors view flats in the area in 1966

Norma Dickson and her son walk through a building site in Muirhouse in 1964; below, visitors view flats in the area in 1966

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THERE was bleak news for residents of one Muirhouse tower block this week after they were banned from putting up Christmas lights and decorations outside the building.

The residents of Muirhouse Park were left devastated after the edict from the Muirhouse Housing Association claiming they would be charged for any damage caused to the building by exterior decorations – especially as there had not been any problem in previous years.

The news was met with anger by families upset at having their Christmas joy shut off just a few weeks ahead of the big day – with many pledging to put up lights regardless.

It’s the latest chapter in the history of buildings that have played a significant role in a thriving city community.

The muddy Muirhouse streets provided the perfect place to raise children, and Mrs Norma Dickson and her son would have been startled by the level of construction in the area as the buildings started to take shape in 1964.

The high rise flats offered a modern standard of living for people, with interiors reflecting the latest design trends through the fixtures and fittings – and of course the by now ubiquitous TV screen in the living room.

And as well as “all mod cons” the buildings gave people some impressive views of the local area – as perfectly demonstrated by the designers and architects who had a glass of champagne on the roof at the topping out ­ceremony of one high rise in 1964.

Of course it wasn’t without its cost, and two ­Muirhouse housewives were found ­discussing the rise in the ­Edinburgh Corporation rents in June 1964.