REVIEW – Edinburgh Brass Rubbing Centre



Brass Rubbing Centre is down here

Opens in April.

The Edinburgh Brass Rubbing Centre is located off the Royal Mile between North Bridge and Jeffrey Street.  You can find it down Chalmer’s Close or approach from the lane beside Jury’s Hotel in Jeffrey Street.

It is worthwhile visiting this beautiful building alone as it occupies Trinity Apse, the sole surviving fragment of the 15th century Trinity College Church and Hospital founded by Mary of Gueldres following the death of her husband King
James II at the siege of Roxburgh in 1460.

It was demolished to make way for the Waverley train station nearby, but in the 1870s the Apse was rebuilt on its current site from original stones.

Inside there are a large number of replica monumental brasses and many examples of rubbings.  I took along a couple of younger members of the Spotlight team, aged 11 and 8,  on a rainy day and they loved it.  The staff were very helpful in explaining how to do it and patient when the design chosen and colour of rubbing was changed several times by the indecisive 8 year old who wanted the ‘prettiest one possible’.  You can choose from black, silver and gold colours and the choice of black or white paper.

Staff preparing the board

We opted for a basic rubbing at £2, but there are some large ones that cost far more, but take more time to complete and perhaps aimed at those that have previously brass rubbed.  It’s not as easy as it looks as some pressure is required to bring the shape through the paper.

£2 unicorn design

I had to assist with the more intricate parts of the design, but their enthusiasm was still there at the end of the hour is took us to complete each one.  Both of them were looking forward to displaying their artwork on the wall of their bedrooms.

One of the finished pieces

Opening Hours
Monday-Saturday 10am–5pm (April to 31 October)  Closed for lunch 12pm-1pm.

Closed November to March, but open to organised groups by arrangement
only. Call 0131 556 4364.

Inside the centre


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