William Sinclair Manson

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Scottish Places of Interest. C.A


Growing up in the Seventies in Edinburgh was cool, apart from the flared trousers, which meant you actually swept the streets as you walked, and the wedged shoes which made you seven feet tall, well fashion tends to come and go just like History that’s why it is named History LOL, a thing in the past, a memory. There was so much to do, so many places to visit, we spent a lot of time at the beach, in fact, most or all of the summer. The beach was called Cramond, not a beach you would associate with sunny climes, golden sands, heat LOL no it was more like a shore than a beach, although further along Cramond there were stretches of sand and Golden at that leading to one of the many small islands in the Firth of Forth.

The one we visited a lot during summer holidays was an Island aptly named Cramond Island, this was an ideal place to play, the trick was to walk over once the tide went out but you had to make sure you got back before the tide came on or else you were stranded, being kids we never knew the tide times but thankfully we always got back in time.
The walk was wonderful, however, there were huge areas where the sand would just sink and I mean deeply sink, not quicksand but similar, so we avoided that area, but it wasn’t always easy.
So what has all this got to do with History I hear you ask,? Well, we are getting to that. Cramond Island was famous more during World War 2 than any other period in its history.

Before that there was evidence of life on the Island around 8500 BC it was believed the first early Scottish settlers settled on the Island, it is not the biggest of Islands it covers a couple of acres.
On the Island are remains of an ancient Roman Fort dug deep, this was a fortress for the Romans which would protect all areas in the Firth of Forth from invading armies, yes the Romans knew what they were doing LOL.

But more recently the Island was used for fortification against German invasion, Guns were placed in shelters which still stand today, and were used when German planes flew over the Firth of Forth, mainly their target was Leith Docks were the Military ships were based.
There was a farmhouse on the island right up until the early 1960s the Island even had sheep on it, but when I visited in the Seventies all that remained were the shelters, bunkers, and storerooms used in


The following picture is a better view from the Island and indicates how large it is, but to young boys in an adventure, it was HUGE…
I recommend if you ever visit Scotland to spend half a day visiting these great Islands, there is a tour of the Islands so do not worry LOL you won’t have to do what I did in the early years and walk over


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