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Edinburgh, 265 High Street, Craig's Close

Tenement (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Edinburgh, 265 High Street, Craig's Close

Classification Tenement (Period Unassigned)

Canmore ID 115342

Site Number NT27SE 1141

NGR NT 2579 7363

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Edinburgh, City Of
  • Parish Edinburgh (Edinburgh, City Of)
  • Former Region Lothian
  • Former District City Of Edinburgh
  • Former County Midlothian

Architecture Notes

Stood on the site of the East section of the City Chambers.

Craig's Close is listed on Edgar 1742 and took this name from John Craig, wright and burgess, who acquired property here from the estate of David Callen, as recorded in "Protocols of William Forbes" 1758. It was also called Denniston's Close, for Alexander Denniston or Danielston, merchant, bailie in 1634, and owner and resident in the close in 1635; it was also Burne's Close, for Patrick Burne, who had a house and tannery by the lochside at the close foot in 1635; and it was probably also Byrnie's Close, for Richard Byrnie, who had property at the close head at some date prior to 1744. Fifthly, it was one of several closes called Cant's Close. From mentions of Litill and Leche as adjoining owners it is clear that this was the "Cantis clois" referred to in RMS (Register of the Great Seal of Scotland, Vols I-XI) 1565; and since property owned hereabouts by an Alexander Cant can be traced back to 1507 in RMS, it is virtually certain that the close is the Alexander Cant's Close mentioned in Town Council Minutes 1514 as the dividing line between the northeast and northwest quarters of the town. In the same period, as witnessed by a reference in "Birrel's Diary" 1598, it was known as Joussie's or Josiah's Close. Six persons of the name are mentioned in Town Council Minutes in the sixteenth century, and all of them seem to be mentioned in later protocols regarding properties in the close; but since a burnt-out tenement rebuilt by a Robert Joussie or Joysie was later owned by Alexander Cant, it is likely that the close was named for Robert Jossy, town councillor in 1500, or a predecessor. The upper part of it was removed almost completely in the eastward extension of the City Chambers in 1930-4, but its most northerly section still descends from Cockburn Street to Market Street. (from Stuart Harris, "Place Names of Edinburgh", 1996, page 208)


Scottish Magazine Jan 1931 -article and photograph of Close


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