History repeats itself, and so it was that tramworks on Princes Street in 1926 led to the removal of a famous Edinburgh landmark – the Sinclair Fountain at the West End, which can now be found on the cycle paths, at Stedfastgate, overlooking the Water of Leith.
The Sinclair Fountain was erected by novelist and philanthropist Catherine Sinclair in 1859 to provide water for horses, dogs and also people, where it stayed until 1926 when the Tramway Sub-committee decided to demolish it.
The remains lay, seemingly forgotten, in a council depot off Bonnington Road, where it was identified years later amongst all the other monumental masonry, thanks to the inscription.
In 1983, it was installed on the cycle path, at the junction with the Water of Leith path to Leith and the Victoria Path where the old railway junction was redevloped to commemorate the centenary of the Boys Brigade – hence its name Stedfastgate, from the Boys Brigade motto “sure and stedfast“.
The stone structure there now is the top of the old fountain, with intricate carvings, where it is the centrepiece of a secluded seating area with views over the Water of Leith, on the remains of the old railway bridge over the river, other remains of which can still be seen.