This weekend a selection of fascinating premises and organisations will throw open doors for members of the public. The full list can be seen at the Doors Open Days site here. Here is a pick of four local sites worth a visit:
- Murchison House, West Mains Road: Scottish Headquarters of the British Geological Survey, the oldest national geological survey in the world. Purpose built, in a cruciform shape, the chamfered corners and glazed stair lights were designed to echo the facets of a crystalline structure.
- Buccleuch and Greyfriars Free Church of Scotland, West Crosscausway: These two churches frame the historic space known locally as ‘The Causey’. Buccleuch and Greyfriars, category C listed and dating from 1856, dominates the area with its towering steeple. By J., W.H. and J.M. Hay, who also built Augustines on George IV Bridge. Chapel of Ease (Graveyard): category B listed and built in 1755-6 as an overflow for St Cuthbert’s Lothian Road. Its tranquil secret graveyard houses several significant graves plus the unmarked grave of Deacon Brodie.
- Queen's Hall, Clerk Street: A category A listed former church, originally designed by architect Robert Brown in 1822, which in 2014 is celebrating its 35th anniversary as a concert hall which now hosts approximately 200 events a year to over 100,000 people.
- Royal Observatory, Blackford Hill: The Royal Observatory Edinburgh combines state-of-the-art high tech facilities and original Victorian observatory buildings on a beautiful hilltop location overlooking the city. On site they design, build and use some of the best telescopes in the world. Visitors can catch talks, demonstrations and exhibits and go behind the scenes at a leading scientific establishment to discover how they contribute to astronomy at every stage in the process from designing a new telescope to using and storing the data produced.