Underbelly reveal reason behind Conan Doyle pub name change

The conan doyle pub on Broughton Street/Picardy Place. Picture: Alan Jenkins.
The conan doyle pub on Broughton Street/Picardy Place. Picture: Alan Jenkins.
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EVENTS firm Underbelly have revealed the reason behind the ‘controversial’ decision to re-name a popular Capital drinking den.

Many Evening News readers were furious to find out on Hogmanay that famous New Town watering hole the Conan Doyle had mysteriously changed to the JK Rowling.

Writing on our Facebook page, one individual called the decision ‘ridiculous’, while another was sad that a city landmark had been ‘given up to commercialism’.

However, we can now reveal that the highly-divisive name change is merely temporary.

The surprise switch is tied in with a new visual art installation for Edinburgh’s Hogmanay called Message from the Skies.

A collaborative effort between crime writer Val McDermid, theatre director Philip Howard and Double Take projections, Message from the Skies is designed to showcase the streets and buildings that have inspired some of the Capital’s finest authors from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Robert Louis Stevenson to JK Rowling and Muriel Spark.

A spokeswoman for Underbelly events said the Conan Doyle name change was simply part of the art installation.

“The story behind the temporary transformation of the Conan Doyle to the JK Rowling is that Val McDermid has written a story for Edinburgh’s Hogmanay’s Message from the Skies which resurrects Susan Ferrier and Muriel Spark and champions women writers.

“She also explores Edinburgh as a city which inspires writers with chapters set across the city.

“Conan Doyle attracted crowds queuing up to get the next instalment of Sherlock Holmes. Today J.K.Rowling has had Harry Potter fans queuing outside book

shops for his next adventure.

“Val is championing a 21st century woman writer.”

Message from the Skies kicks off this evening and runs until 25 January.