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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 February 2008, 01:14 GMT
Stars choose favourite pictures
George Foulkes' choice of a burst water pipe in the Grassmarket.
This photograph of a burst water pipe was chosen by George Foulkes

Prominent Edinburgh people have chosen their favourite pictures from the city's new online image archive.

Comedian Rory Bremner was among those who made their selection from the thousands of images of the city which are to be digitised and put on the web.

The City of Edinburgh Council's library service hopes to eventually include images of the whole of Scotland.

Each image will be fully indexed with historical information to allow users to easily search for pictures.

The Capital Collections website will feature thousands of photographs, prints, watercolours, etchings and engravings depicting Scotland's capital.

Rory Bremner's choice of a view of Edinburgh from Calton Hill.
Rory Bremner's choice shows the good and bad of the city

The website includes examples of the work of the pioneers of Scottish photography, such as David Octavius Hill and Robert Adamson, alongside works by Thomas Begbie, Archibald Burns and Walter Geikie.

It has been launched with a free exhibition at the city's Central Library, where the images selected by a host of prominent current and former Edinburgh residents will be put on display.

Impressionist Bremner chose a view of the city looking west from Calton Hill by Mary Elton.

Explaining his choice, he said: "This lithograph from 1822 shows better than most the contrast between the crowded, haphazard old town on the left and the regimented order of the New Town on the right.

"The old town is shrouded in the smoke which earned Edinburgh the nickname 'Auld Reekie', while elegant ladies and gentlemen take the air on Calton Hill."

Kirsty Balfour's choice of a photograph of Warrender Park Swimming Baths
Kirsty Balfour chose a photograph of Warrender Park Swimming Baths

Commonwealth Games swimming medallist Kirsty Balfour chose a photograph of Warrender Park Swimming Baths dating from 1888.

"One of my earliest memories of swimming is at Warrender Baths Swimming Pool. My parents used to take me there every weekend," she said.

"I spent most of the time under the water watching the sunlight as it made pretty patterns on the tiled floor of the pool."

Labour peer and former Minister of State for Scotland George Foulkes said his choice of a burst water pipe in the Grassmarket taken around 1912 was "typical of both people and the town and is a striking picture in itself".

City libraries leader Councillor Deidre Brock said: "With a focus on Edinburgh's social history and architecture, Capital Collections can help people from all over the world research family roots, learn about Edinburgh's history and maybe even unlock some hidden secrets of the past."

SEE ALSO
In pictures: Capital Collections
26 Feb 08 |  In Pictures

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