Letters: The true story of the Boundary Bar boys

Boundary Bar; Leith Walk
Boundary Bar; Leith Walk
0
Have your say

One reader shares his incredible memories of the inconic Boundary Bar.

I was brought up in Spey Street (just off Pilrig Street) during the 40s and 50s and have fond memories of the Walk.

The contributed image from our reader

The contributed image from our reader

I noticed you mentioned Borlands; this was where my parents hired out our first TV after we were fitted with electricity just in time for the Coronation in 1953.

The piece I really want to comment on is the Boundary Bar, which is where I had my first pint and became my local for a while.

READ MORE: Changing face of Leith: Has ‘gentrification’ meant improvement?

Like all legends, though, the truth sometimes gets lost through time, unless you were there at the time, of course, which I was.

Andy Barlow, then manager of the Boundary Bar in Leith, standing outside his pub with the original brass Leith/Edinburgh boundary sign in March 1989.

Andy Barlow, then manager of the Boundary Bar in Leith, standing outside his pub with the original brass Leith/Edinburgh boundary sign in March 1989.

In the late 50s bar opening times were 12-2pm and 5-10pm with 15 minutes drinking up time, and it was Edinburgh that had their licence extended before Leith.

I remember standing at the Leith side of the bar on the first Saturday afternoon after the change when the barman told us we would have to move to the Edinburgh side at 2pm.

Of course we thought he was kidding, but he wasn’t. At 2pm the lights on the Leith side were put out and the blinds pulled down on the windows and we were all made to move over.

It was a bit of a laugh to begin with but it became farcical when the police came in to check that no one was drinking on the Leith side.

READ MORE: Underbelly reveal reason behind Conan Doyle pub name change

And of course things got unbearable when punters from other bars in Leith started pouring in for the extra time.

Needles to say, the Boundary became our ex-local.

Sorry for turning a legend on its head, but this is the true story.

PS the picture of me here (contributed) was taken on Hogmanay 1958/59.

Mr RD, West Calder