Edinburgh shop: Iconic Leith Shop has sign restored to ‘former glory’ ahead of grand opening

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Renowned Edinburgh shop has sign restored as work nears completion for grand opening

The Wee Leith Shop, at 340 Leith Walk, was empty for nearly two decades before the owners of the Dreadnought pub in North Fort Street snapped it up. Toby Saltonstall and Roisin Therese said from day one it was important to them to preserve the building’s unique charm and character.

Now they have had the sign handpainted to reflect the original as part of drive to restore the shop to it's ‘former glory’ ahead of it’s anticipated opening. Major restoration works are still underway but the couple hopes to open the doors soon as off-licence showcasing local craft beers.

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The owners said: "When we took on The Wee Leith Shop, we were determined that any work we did on it would only be to restore it to its former glory. This included keeping the name and restoring the sign to reflect the original. I had seen the work of Journeyman Signs (look him up on Instagram) and knew that he was the man for the job. I couldn't be happier with what a great job he's done on our new handpainted sign.

Sign handpainted ahead of opening soonSign handpainted ahead of opening soon
Sign handpainted ahead of opening soon

"The shop remains closed while we navigate various paperwork nightmares and unexpected obstacles with the restoration process. Meanwhile, please enjoy our beautiful new sign when you're passing and we're looking forward to throwing open the doors ASAP!”

Despite business having been tough over the past two years due to Covid, the couple said buying the quirky unit was an opportunity which was ‘too good to pass up’. Previous owners were determined to sell to someone they could be sure would keep its values and give back to the community.

Roisin said: “From the earliest days of trying to buy this premises, I have been adamant that we will not be changing anything about it. We think it's perfect as it is and so would change nothing. We fully appreciate that there is a great affection for this shop in the local community and are aware that being the custodians of such a well loved local landmark with such a rich history comes with a certain amount of responsibility. We're going to look after it.”

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