It’s been all change on the local pub scene in the last decade or so. The latest casualty is the Centurion Bar, long a landmark on St John’s Road, and which is featured in the book of Literary Corstorphine.
The Centurion provided the scene for part of Irvine Welsh’s Bedroom Secrets of the Master Chefs (2006):
“Brian Kibby pulled his lumbering, shivering bulk into the Centurion Bar on Corstorphine’s St John’s Road. On entry he was hit by a smoky fog even more pervasive and impenetrable than the frozen fog he’d emerged from.”
This was obviously written before the smoking ban, which occurred a year or two after it was published.
The Centurion and other Locals
What to say about the Centurion? Well, I was never one of its drinkers, to be honest, so perhaps I’m partly responsible for its demise. Still, I hope all of the staff find new jobs in the near future.
Since mid 1990s, we’ve seen the following changes:
- The Gyle Inn has shut. It stood near where “American Golf” is now.
- The Rainbow Inn at Drumbrae, now a very good Indian restaurant.
- The Corstorphine Inn, “the Corrie”, has had many changes made to it, including having its skittle alley ripped out.
- The Oak is now gone, and replaced by the Torphin.
- Agenda has been replaced by the White Lady.
- The Carrick Knowe Inn is now called the Terrace.
- The Maybury Roadhouse has ended up as a casino.
The obvious culprits are chain pubs such as The Corstorphine Inn and The White Lady, which have various means to outcompete their smaller rivals.
Winstons is still happily with us, and a new carvery has opened in South Gyle called “Westgate Farm”. Then there’s another two, hidden up the hill in the housing of East Craigs – the Mid Yoken and Clermiston (the “Clerrie”). I’ve never been into either of these.
The bars of Roseburn and Murrayfield seem to do well enough – helped by the regular influx of sports fans and concert goers to the local stadium and ice rink.