Princes Street Gardens and Edinburgh Castle Gardens are two neighbouring public parks in the middle of Edinburgh, Scotland. The Gardens were built in the 1820s as a result of the protracted draining of the Nor Loch and construction of the New Town, which began in the 1760s.
West Princes Street Grarden:
West Princes Street Gardens were originally owned by “the Princes Street Proprietors.”The council handed this on to them in 1816. In 1821, the gardens were usually opened to subscribers. Dogs,cricket,perambulators, and smoking were forbidden under its regulations. The Scottish Association for the Prevention of Drunkenness requested that the gardens be open between Christmas, New Year’s, as well as one other day.
Despite strong resistance from locals, the municipal government reclaimed the land in 1876 for use as a public park. Robert Morham, the city architect, designed the new park. With the beginning of the Ross Development Trust’s The Quaich Project fund raiser, modernization of the gardens is now being discussed.
Royal Scots Monuments:
Sir Frank Mears designed it, and Pilkington Jackson sculpted it and is described as a “contemporary henge.” It originates from 1950 but was renovated to and “completed” in May 2007.
Ross Fountain and Ross Bandstand:
The Ross Bandstand in the West Gardens is named after William Henry Ross, Chairman of the Distillers Company Ltd., who donated the site’s original bandstand in 1877. The Festival Fireworks Concert, Men’s Health Survival of the Fittest, and the city’s Hogmanay celebrations are among the many events and other occasions performed at the Ross Bandstand. It was placed in 1872 as a gift from Edinburgh gunsmith Daniel Ross and refurbished in 2018 with the assist of the Ross Development Trust.
Four massive air-raid shelters were built into this northern barrier in 1939. Alexander Garden Forgie created the unique shelters that presently line the top pathway in 1950. They are classified buildings, as are the majority of the structures in the gardens.
Mortonhall Baby Ashes Memorial:
On February 2, 2019, designer Andy Scott added a new memorial to the gardens in the form of a newborn elephant. This is a perpetual memorial of the 250 infants and their families affected by the Mortonhall scandal, which was discovered in 2012. It is situated near The Genius of Architecture.
East Princes Street Gardens:
East Princes Street Gardens arose from a disagreement between Edinburgh Corporation and the early New Town landlords, including philosopher David Hume, who lived in St. David Street, a busy street off Princes Street. The site was purchased by the council in 1771 as part of the First New Town construction. It started feuding on the south side of Princes Street.
The Scott Monument, a Neo-Gothic spire constructed in 1844 to honour Sir Walter Scott, is the most conspicuous feature in the East Gardens. There are sculptures of the adventurer David Livingstone, the printer and Lord Provost Adam Black, and the writer Professor John Wilson, who authored under the pen name Christopher North, in East Princes Street Gardens.
Every year, the East Gardens are turned into a ‘Winter Wonderland’ in the weeks running up to Christmas. This features a number of amusement park attractions as well as a Christmas Market with food and presents from all around the world. The ice rink and the 33-metre-high Ferris wheel, called ‘The Edinburgh Eye,’ are the most renowned attractions.