An Afternoon of Hidden Gems

stockbridge, edinburgh

I love the hustle and bustle of a big city and Edinburgh is one of my favourites.

There’s always so much to see and do here that it’s little wonder people flock to Scotland’s capital. Taking a meander away from the usual tourist drag, however, my other half and I found ourselves in Stockbridge.

It’s an area we’d only ever driven through before. We liked the laid-back atmosphere so much, we spent a delightful afternoon browsing the abundance of charity shops that pepper the route. They sit perfectly well alongside antique stores, independent bookshops and craft stores.

Helping hands for charity

Apparently, the charity stores do rather well in this area and it is little wonder. With the gems we found inside them, from an array of stunning wedding dresses and posh frocks through to pretty ornaments and trinkets. The other gems you’ll find in them are the volunteers who give up their time to do their bit.

In June 9 issue of the “Friend” you can read all about one particular volunteer – Roger Baker – who has just celebrated 50 years of volunteering with Oxfam in Abingdon. On reaching this magnificent milestone, Roger modestly says, “It gives a sense of doing something useful.”

I’ll be back!

Back in Stockbridge, we spent so long browsing the charity stores and other great shops, that by the time we found the market – held every Sunday – the stallholders were closing up for the day. Thankfully we still managed to bag ourselves a fresh baguette and cheese – panic buying springs to mind as the goods were being packed up so quickly!

Our impromptu visit was over too soon and we’ll definitely be back. Next time, we’ll maybe even treat ourselves in one of the many cafes or restaurants that also caught our eye.

In fact, I believe Stockbridge has a community festival which runs for more than a week at the end of June. Apparently, 1,000 rubber ducks are numbered and released into the waters of Leith. It’s known as the Stockbridge Duck Race and raises money for charity.

Well, if it’s for charity the least I can do is make a return visit and support the cause!

Yvonne McKenzie

Yvonne works on the Features team and admits to being nosy, so loves looking after the Between Friends letters and finding out all about our lovely readers. She also looks after our health copy and enjoys writing about inspiring people that help make the articles in the magazine so interesting.