Muirhouse is a residential estate in the north of Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland.


It is west of Granton (the housing estates of East Pilton and West Pilton), and east of Davidsons Mains. It is bounded to the south by Ferry Road and to the east by Pennywell Road.


Muirhouse (1832) in north Edinburgh

The name Muirhouse derives from a mansion built on the edge of Wardie Muir (Moor), designed by R & R Dickson in 1830[1] and completed in 1832. It was built for the Davidson family, who were wealthy merchants trading in Rotterdam.[2] The modern residential area of Muirhouse was built in the 1950s as a council estate, though since the mid-1980s some of the housing has also been privately owned. Two 50 ft (15 m) high towers that were part of the Muirhouse mansion were still standing at the time work began on the development, but these were demolished in 1954 after they became unsafe.[3]


Block of maisonettes at Muirhouse Grove (2014)

The predominant feature of the area is the 22-storey tower block Martello Court, which accommodates 88 flats. Other high rise blocks in the area include Birnies Court, Fidra Court, Gunnet Court and Inchmickery Court amongst others.

The area is generally regarded as one of the most deprived areas of Edinburgh, with anti-social behaviour and drug use major problems in the area. However, in recent years major redevelopment of the area has gone underway. Martello Court, which was once seen as the centre of Muirhouse's social problems has been refurbished, and now holds a better reputation. Much of the area's low-mid rise housing has been, or is set to be demolished as part of the City Council's plan to provide 1,100 new council houses in some of the city's most deprived estates.[4] The Muirhouse Housing Association is involved in redevelopment work.[5]


Craigroyston Community High School is a secondary comprehensive school located in Muirhouse on Pennywell Road.[6]


The main churches were Muirhouse St. Andrew's Parish Church (Church of Scotland) and St Paul's Roman Catholic Church. The former united with The Old Kirk of Edinburgh in 2014 to become The Old Kirk and Muirhouse parish church. St Paul's closed around 2016 and the building is now demolished.

Notable residentsEdit

The author Irvine Welsh lived for some time in Muirhouse, as did former Scotland national football team player and manager Gordon Strachan.[7]


Muirhouse compared[8] Muirhouse Edinburgh
White 88.8% 91.7%
Asian 3.6% 5.5%
Black 6.0% 1.2%
Mixed 0.9% 0.9%


  1. ^ Dictionary of Scottish Architects: Dickson
  2. ^ "Muirhouse from the "Gazetteer for Scotland" at the University of Edinburgh". Retrieved 23 October 2009.
  3. ^ "Old Towers Felled". Aberdeen Evening Express. British Newspaper Archive. 14 April 1954. Retrieved 18 July 2014.
  4. ^ Edinburgh to get first new council houses in twenty years, Daily Record
  5. ^ Muirhouse Housing Association.
  6. ^ Website of Craigroyston Community High School
  7. ^ Johnson, Phil. "Scotsman report, 21 December 2005". Retrieved 23 October 2009.
  8. ^ Muirhouse and West Pilton Area Snapshot Archived 7 October 2016 at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit

  Media related to Muirhouse, Edinburgh at Wikimedia Commons

Coordinates: 55°58′19.22″N 3°15′16.00″W / 55.9720056°N 3.2544444°W / 55.9720056; -3.2544444