Walking tour celebrates 250th anniversary of New Town plan

The 70th Edinburgh Fringe Festival has a huge array of performances scheduled to appease even the obscurest of cultural appetites.

Jean Bareham operates Edinburgh’s GreenYonder Tours and has taken thousands of curious visitors around the Hidden Gardens of The Royal Mile.

Jean’s Hidden Gardens tour has sold out well in advance of the first Fringe firework, this year the tour guide has a whole new walk celebrating the 250th anniversary of the plan to build Edinburgh’s New Town.

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With the overcrowding and squalid conditions of the Old Town worsening all the time, plans for Edinburgh’s New Town - running between Princes Street and Hanover Street - were devised.

The tour begins in Princes Street Gardens and travels across the New Town before winding through the normally inaccessible Queen Street Gardens, where Jean explains Robert Louis Stevenson may have conceived Treasure Island while staring off at the island in the middle of the pond.

The GreenYonder tour turns up some interesting trivia on New Town style and Jean promises to point out plenty “nooks and crannies”, which are popular stop-off points on her Hidden Gardens tour.

“It’s been more difficult to find nooks and crannies in the New Town, but I have tried to do that and show people different angles,” she says.

“But also, I’ve concentrated on the stories of people.”

To rediscover Edinburgh’s New Town through the stories of some of its earliest inhabitants, visit facebook.com/greenyondertours or greenyondertours.com