Newhaven Village & Harbour. A Potted History!

Just a short distance from where I live, lies the pretty village and harbour of Newhaven.

Newhaven is a district in the City of Edinburgh, Scotland, lying between Leith and Granton, about 2 miles north of the city centre. Formerly a village and harbour on the Firth of Forth, it boasts a population of around 5,000, and became a conservation area in 1977.

History Of Newhaven

Newhaven was once a thriving fishing village and a centre for shipbuilding.

Its buildings were typical of many Scottish fishing villages. An outside stair led to first floor accommodation. The ground floor served as storage space for nets. In the 1960’s, more modern housing still kept to the style of these older buildings.

The village was once connected by the Edinburgh, Leith and Newhaven Railway to Edinburgh and Leith. The line closed, however, in 1956. It was also connected to Stirling by steamboat, which took just over 3 hours to travel 42 miles.

A lighthouse built at the harbour entrance in 1869 is a local landmark. The harbour has now been dwarfed by the enlarged Leith Harbour. The once thriving Victorian fishmarket has now become a smaller functioning fishmarket. Several restaurants now occupy the space as well. The Newhaven Heritage Museum, occupying a small section of the old fishmarket, closed in 2007. This is now a retail fishmonger, linked to the adjacent fishmarket. The old Victorian fishmarket on the eastern side of the harbour became a listed building in 1990. Otherwise, demolition was on the cards.

The new Western Harbour development extends north into the Firth of Forth from Newhaven. It is also the home of the David Lloyd Newhaven Harbour Sports Centre. Sir Andy Murray, allegedly, regularly played tennis here as a youngster.

Conclusion

Unfortunately, new development to the north and north-east of the village has quickly dwarfed the original village. Much of the village now looks out onto high-rise modern apartments, rather than the Firth of Forth. Oh well, that’s the price we pay for progress, I suppose?

I must, once again, extend my thanks to Wikipedia and its various contributors. This post would have been difficult to write without them!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.