Leith Nautical College

Vital Sparks
15th August 2011, 11:32
I was in the class of 1978 which was the first to attend only the new building on Milton Road, a flashy building that looked like a ship, complete with navigation bridge, radar masts and a funnel. Ironic that what should have been the start of a bright new future was in reality the beginning of the end with contraction of the Merchant Navy already well underway.

My oddest memory is the morse code practice tapes, avaliable from the library, and recorded years before in the old college, on which the background noise included the sound of trams going by.

20th September 2011, 20:58
Class of 1976 MRRT

I moved into the accomodation block in April 1977 when the builders were still in and used to travel to and from on the bus back to the old college mornings and evenings..

Comparing the old and the new: The old building had a feeling of history about it (not to mention the smell) but you could look out over the docks from the rear of the building and see the occasional ship being worked.

The new building was totally different: Wide well lit corridors with that "new" smell about them. Most memorably the chairs were actually comfortable to sit in; something which couldn't be said of most of the old buildings fittings.

We went from the old places boozers the Steamboat across the road and the Tower Bar along at the dock gates; to the Brunstane Arms (now dissapeared under the new ASDA) and over the wall to the Kings Manor Hotel.

Memorable things:

interesting takeaways from after-pub visits down Portobello high street

Chicken in a basket from the Kings Manor; along with the usual wash-down carlsberg or three (well; they SAID it was chicken... might have been seagull after several cool ones dissapeared)

Chalkey White's Morse sessions... Definitely memorable.

Ned Lloyd.... Say no more... :-)

I wonder what Eric Lamb would have to say if he knew I now teach Morse to Radio Amateurs...

I remember the official opening by the P of W well actually by not being there.. It was cunningly arranged for none of the non-company sponsored students to be there; with our backsides hanging out of our trousers.. metaphorically speaking... Only Company Cadets with their shiny new uniforms allowed.

I got a bollocking from ET Morgan one day for being improperly dressed i.e. out of uniform. I was to be immediately reported to my company... I told him if he could arrange for me to be employed by a company; I would be delighted to wear any uniform provided... 3 blasts astern and retreat over the horizon...

He avoided me after that.. Can't think why!