26/02/2019 Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Historic Jacob's Ladder reopens, connecting the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh

6378ce23-6a04-40d4-9cf5-0111ae6c8d93

Jacob’s Ladder, the steep pathway carved into the volcanic rock of Calton Hill, has today reopened, following 'extensive improvements' including high-tech lighting.

The pathway, which starts under the railway bridge on Calton Road and emerges into the light at Regent Road, first appeared on a map in 1784, though is likely to have existed as a route long before then. It was also used as a route for funeral processions from the Old Town to the old Calton Hill burying ground. There are a number of steeppaths and steps dotted around the UK that are named after the biblical Jacob’s Old Testament dream at Bethel.

The work was supported by the New Waverley Community Fund, City of Edinburgh Council, and Edinburgh World Heritage. Stonework repairs included repointing, replacing broken sections and remolding areas close to the new railings. Stonemason apprentices from St. Mary’s Cathedral Workshop were also involved in repairing the walls. New specialist equipment was used to remove the graffiti from the fragile stonework, together with environmentally-friendly chemicals. The lighting solution for the pathway has been designed to improve personal safety and eliminate any dark corners and hiding places.

An ancient pathway

Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage said: ‘The ancient wynds and pathways of Edinburgh, each with their own stories and associations, are an important part of our rich cultural heritage. We want to encourage everyone to use these pedestrian routes, including closes, paths through burying grounds, and wynds, as they go about their daily business and perhaps explore their city a little in the process’.

Cllr Neil Gardiner, Planning Convener, added: ‘The restoration of this historic pedestrian route has made it a much more attractiveand accessible path for those enjoying the city by foot. I would encourage anyone able to manage the 140 stairs to go and check out the spectacular views and hidden stories from the past that make this such a great short cut down to the Old Town from Regent Road.

‘This project is a great example of the preservation work carried out by EdinburghWorld Heritage and I’m really pleased that we chose to support the restoration through the New Waverley Community Fund.’

QUICK LINK: Top ten castles in and around Edinburgh

Report courtesy of Edinburgh World Heritage.

(images copyright Tom Duffin)

News

26/02/2019 Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Recent Updates

Strong story telling should be at the heart of immersive experiences - new research at major Scottish heritage sites

Heritage tourists say they would prefer emerging immersive technologies at major sites in Scotland to keep ...


New infra-red imaging survey reveals 'additional areas of concern' at Charles Rennie Mackintosh's Hill House

State of the art survey techniques have revealed the severity of water damage to Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s ...


Outlander author Diana Gabaldon to be honoured at Scottish tourism 'Oscars' tonight

Outlander author Diana Gabaldon will be honoured at the Scottish Thistle Awards tonight (14 March), as a new ...


Scotland's past and future as a global nation to be explored in History Scotland lecture

Professor Tanja Bueltmann, a global authority on Scotland's worldwide diaspora, will deliver a lecture titled ...


Other News

Pioneer Victoria-era glass photograph slides rescued from skip

Remarkable images of pioneers boring through rocky mountainsides during the construction of the Katrine ...


Launch of unique digital gallery of British Methodist buildings

More than 10,000 historic photographs of Methodist buildings around Britain form the core of the launch of a ...


Drochaid a' Chaolais Chumhaing / Kylesku Bridge has been listed as a category A structure

Kylesku Bridge has been renamed in Gaelic to mark its new Category A structure status, and to recognise the ...


Final phase of £80 million transformation unveiled at National Museum of Scotland

Three new galleries at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh open to the public on 8 February, ...