School’s out for Capital’s kids

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The schools are out for summer and children everywhere will be chucking their shirts and ties away and gearing up for the long months of fun that lie ahead.

These days that could involve anything from a family 
holiday in much sunnier climes to simply playing computer games and lazing around the house.

But in years gone by the summer holidays were a very different affair, when children without access to the sort of technology youngsters enjoy today had to make their own entertainment, wherever they were.

For four young disadvantaged youngsters on the Pilton Project back in 1971 that meant everything from camping to peeling spuds in the open air as they took part in an initiative to help give them an enjoyable holiday.

Other children did get to travel further afield, and Waverley Station was generally buzzing with youngsters in the 70s as families headed off for a seaside holiday down south.

For most, however, holidays meant home, and back in 1959 children found their enjoyment playing on the slopes of Arthur’s Seat, next to their homes in the tenements of St Leonard’s which were set to be demolished.

The Holyrood Park landmark was always a popular spot for youngsters in the summer, with boys using it as an impromptu slide. And the cool waters of St Margaret’s Loch were transformed into a fun-filled paddling pool back in 1959 as youngsters got out to enjoy the sunshine.

Another popular paddling spot was the Portobello outdoor pool, which found itself mobbed every year with eager bathers and junior swimmers keen to learn the basics in a safe environment.