An exciting day is planned for shedders, family and friends on Wednesday 12 June. Come for 10am for a cuppa to the Drennan Hall at Polwarth Parish Church . Join the Lochrin Belle at 10.30am for a short trip up the Union Canal. If you wish you can talk to the People Know How Team who will ask you about your hopes and dreams for the Canal Shed which we can use in our funding applications in the future. Or just enjoy the ride which will last an hour. Returning to the Shed you can join in the activities on offer – woodwork, creative crafts, talking to friends, preparing for the Canal Festival stall. At 12 noon a new canalside garden – THE PEACE GARDEN – sponsored by Scotland’s War 1914-1919 and Scotmid will be opened by Professor Yvonne McEwen and Kirsty Connell and Rev Jack Holt. You are welcome to join them. Lots of tea, coffee and cake.

The Shed is having a stall at the Gateaux for the Bateaux in the grounds of Polwarth Parish Church from 2-4 pm on Saturday 15 June. We hope to make a lot of money from the sale of items we have made during the year – planters, cards, preserves, tea cosies, bags, gift tags and lots more. This will help us buy materials for our next projects. There will be activities for the children provided by Brownies and Rainbows so a fun day out for the whole family. Visit the Canal Festival at the Basin first and then wander up to us.

More details about the Peace Garden and its inception. World War one historian Professor Yvonne McEwen has successfully worked throughout the centenary commemorations to establish memorials to the nursing and medical staff and the memorial Peace Garden at Polwarth Parish Church on the canalside has been established with support from a large community grant from Scotmid and some other donations. The team at Polwarth Church has worked diligently to prepare the ground to the left of the decking for this. Thanks go especially to Scott for all his digging and for the Canal Shed members who were able to support him, the Canal Shed for making our planters, Maureen and Sarah for planting up, and to Alan for repairing the wall. Yvonne has expressed her heartfelt gratitude to the church for its support, hard work and dedication in making the memorial garden a reality.

Yvonne has also organised a display from the National Library of Scotland of images of the work of the barge medical and nursing staff to be in the Drennan Hall of the church. An extract from a Scottish Nursing Sister’s diary who served on a barge will also be highlighted. We hope lots of friends old and new can join us for this occasion within Shed time. We are working together in partnership and harmony.


PHOTOGRAPHY Join shedders and others for a digital photography session with hands on practical experience. The session on Wednesday 29 May begins at 10.30 so come at 10am and join us for a drink before hand. Margaret will lead an informal session with hands on experience. After the session, enjoy more coffee and cake.

At the Canal Shed, we have some amazing events coming up, including:
– 22 May Canal Clean-up, together with volunteers (and work boat) from Re-Union Canal Boats. We’ll meet ANNA CANNING at 10.30 sharp at the moorings at Harrison Park West to distribute litterpicking equipment and protective gear. After our clean-up, we’ll head back to the Canal Shed for hot drinks (and cake) – and a bit of fun with a quiz on litter and biodegradation, finishing at 1 pm. So whether you’re a recycling pro or a nurdle novice, please join us for this sociable and very worthwhile outing. And bring your pals!

Lots of other great events coming up at The Canal Shed over the next few weeks too: highlights include notably the opening of the Peace Garden at 12 noon after the boat – cruise from 10.30- 11.30am on on 12 June.  Our refreshments will be served on the boat that day. On Saturday 15 June we will join Polwarth Church’s afternoon extravaganza between 2 and 4 pm with a stall selling our crafts. Look out for our planters made and filled by David and decorated by .

This is a message from Anna Canning …….. ‘I have said farewell as Project Manager, moving on to undertake research on Scotland’s folk medicine traditions – but will continue support the Canal Shed as an external facilitator. If you would like to keep in touch with my other projects and educational activities, my email is or you can follow me on Facebook at And I’ll look forward to seeing you at a Canal Shed or Floramedica event! This email address will remain the primary contact for The Canal Shed, in the excellent hands of Dawn Whittaker supported by our Board and regular members. And of course there will always be a warm welcome awaiting on a Wednesday from 10-1 at the Drennan Hall, with tea, cake, good conversation and activities to suit all interests.’

We wish Anna well in her new venture. The email address for the shed is Please get in touch and I will respond as soon as I can. I can also be contacted on 07737262774. We are a drop in so if you prefer, just drop in. Looking forward to seeing you. Dawn  Treasurer and Trustee


Wednesday 15 May there will be lots going on at the shed with gardening, wood working activities, making craft items to sell at the Canal Festival on Saturday 15 June at a stall in the church garden and finishing off our booklet to advertise our activities. The weather wasn’t kind last week but hopefully this week it will be and we can get on with developing our herb garden.

Join us on Wednesday 8 May, Drennan Hall, 10am – 1pm, for the usual shed activities, with more work in the garden weather permitting. Do drop in and see us and enjoy friendship and refreshments. We said goodbye to our Project Manager Anna Canning 24 April and we thank her for her dedicated service over the past two years. Anna will call in today to say her final goodbye so join us if you can. For more information contact us at

Thank you from the church for the Canal Shed work on the Peace Garden and on part of the Canalside Garden in front of the decking.















Photographs from 24 April

Join us this coming week on Wednesday I May, Drennan Hall, 10am – 1pm, for the usual shed activities. If the sun is still shining we can enjoy the garden and perhaps work on the herb area with David or join Neil in a woodwork activity. Kitty and Dawn will be working on our new booklet. So drop in and see us and enjoy friendship and home made cake.  For more information contact us at

Last week 24 April, which was STOP FOOD WASTE DAY, we made soup with left overs and discussed food facts which astonished us. Waste is so high we all felt we should do more to stop it and use food waste bins at all times.  We said goodbye to our Project Manager Anna Canning and thanked her for her dedicated service over the past two years.

We have had a few very busy weeks with lots of work done on the church’s Peace Garden. On 17 April stone collecting was done by five shed members and two visiting police personnel (who came to talk about financial scam awareness). The Peace Garden will be opened on 12 June and there is lots to do before then on the ground. David has made planters to go there.







Work on the herb garden continues along with other tidying up in the church gardens.








David is growing at home the Sunday School Malawi sunflower seeds and will transplant them to behind the herb garden for the Sunday School to look after.

Wednesday 10 April 10am – 1pm at the shed will be full of fun. There will be a canalside walk from 10.30 – 11.30 am led by myself looking for wild food and doing spring foraging. There will also be working in the gardens, doing wood working activities and planning creative activities for items to make to sell in June at the Canal Festival. We are moving from the Peace Garden branches cut from the trees nearby to develop the space. The Peace Garden will be opened at noon on Wednesday 12 June so we are working against the clock. If you would like to join us please do. Also we are preparing a new booklet about the shed so if you have any ideas for us to use let us know. Home-made refreshments available. Anna Canning Project Manager 07790885969.

It was a planning week on 3 April and then lots of activity on the canalside removing stones and branches from the Peace Garden being made to the left of the decking. A new programme was developed to take us to June and it will be posted soon.


OUT: On 27 March: we have a fantastic opportunity to visit the Cyrenians Community Garden (RECG) at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital. We will join their volunteers for a free lunch after a tour of the garden and installing one of our beautiful bird boxes there. If you are not a Canal Shed member you can meet us at the Community Garden at around 11 am. The Canal Shed members will meet as usual at 10am and travel up together from the Drennan Hall at 10.30am. (And don’t worry – the canalside foraging walk will be rescheduled for April!)

IN: We will be in the gardens, doing workworking activities and also creative work to prepare for our stall at the Canal Festival in June. Please join us and bring ideas with you. Materials also welcomed with your ideas. Refreshments with home-baking as usual.



13 March: Skillshare: Gerry – Introduction to QI GONG

20 March: 10.30 – 11.30am Skillshare: Neil Jeffreys on Trekking in Nepal


Canal History Walk – Wednesday 6 March, led by local canal historian Richard Allen. You’ll never look at the Canal the same way again (in a good way!). The plan is to meet at 10 am by the swan sculptures at the Canal Basin (Edinburgh Quay) and walk back to the Canal Shed (Polwarth Church hall) for hot drinks. This will be a gentle walk, but it would be advisable to wear an extra layer and sensible footwear. We can provide portable seats if you would find this helpful. (Please note, our plan B for bad weather will be to meet at the Canal Shed, where Richard will give us an indoor presentation instead. We will email and post on Facebook to let you know if this is likely to happen!) The Shed will still be open for those not participating in the walk.

Our paper sculpture meeting was very well attended and what fun we had with Isabell on 13 February. Why not join us on Wednesdays in the Drennan Hall 10am – 1pm.













We made beeswax wraps on 6 February so we could help the environment. 















The Canal Shed at Polwarth began working independently of The Scottish Waterways Trust when funding ran out last June. The Canal Shed continued to and still does meet in the Drennan Hall 10am to 1pm. During the autumn the trustees worked to make the shed a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO). This has now been granted which will allow for future developments. The church supports the work of The Canal Shed and The Canal Shed reciprocates by doing jobs such as helping with gardening, small repair jobs, mending chairs and broken items – a good partnership. Watch out for The Canal Shed activity in 2019. We hope you will come and see what we do and consider joining us.

ACTIVITIES January – March 2019 which include the usual activities of gardening, joinery/maintenance and craft activities that run concurrently. Special activities are listed below:

9 January: Welcome back! Review and agree activities & local opportunities

16 January: Ross Lamb from Bowel Cancer UK: 30 minute talk plus 15 minutes Q&A

23 January: Skillshare at 10.30am: talk on plastics in the environment by Neil Jeffreys

30 January: Burns/Scots-themed creative writing activity led by Angela Blacklock-Brown

6 February: 10.30 – 11.30am Anna demonstrates how to make your own beeswax food wraps (to cut your plastic consumption)

13 February: 10.30am – 12.30pm  Isabell Buenz – workshop on paper crafts/sculpture; bring a paperback to cut up and use

20 February: Skillshare: talk by Jim McCathy on his experiences in Africa

27 February: Activities

6 March: 10am – 12.45pm Canal History Day with local historian Richard Allen. Meet at Lochrin Basin for walking tour finishing at Polwarth Church Drennan Hall for tea/coffee

13 March: Skillshare: Gerry – Introduction to QI GONG

20 March: 10.30 – 11.30am Skillshare: Neil Jeffreys on Trekking in Nepal

27 March: 10.13 – 11.30 walk and 11.30 -12.30 indoors with Anna on Wild Food on the canalside – early spring greens
























The last session on Wednesday 19 December was PARTY TIME 10am – 1pm with our infamous indoor curling competition. We had lots of fun and meet friends old and new before we left for a two week Christmas break. There was mulled wine, Christmas cake and lots of other food delights. HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE. Anna Canning and Canal Shed members

PS Monies raised from sale of items now stands at £334.50. Thanks to everyone who has purchased our wonderful items.


We raised £265 at the fayre and still more is coming in as we sell more items. Join us at the shed on Wednesday 12 December 10am – 1pm in the Drennan Hall to make natural Christmas decorations and your very own Christmas wreath. Bring some greenery for the wreath if you can such as berries, holly.










JOIN US THIS WEDNESDAY 17 OCTOBER 10AM – 1PM TO HELP US MAKE CHRISTMAS ITEMS TO SELL AT THE CRAIGLOCKHART SCHOOL CHRISTMAS FAYRE ON THURSDAY 22 NOVEMBER. Woodwork, leaf clearing, upcycling items, crafts, friendship and eating home made cake are some of the activities that will also be going on. JOIN THE FUN. WE WOULD LOVE TO SEE YOU.

On Wednesday 19 September David led a session on the use of basic tools and Shed members made some planters under his supervision. These will be sold to raise money to buy more wood to make more items. Shed members have now had two health and safety talks.












Programme until Christmas as below but always includes gardening, joinery/maintenance and craft activities. Special activities generally begin at 10.30 am unless otherwise stated and run for a one hour maximum.

WEDNESDAY 26 SEPTEMBER: SPECIAL FEATURE – APPLE HARVEST SESSION with Anna.  The usual activities will be on offer as well.

3 October: Nari Kallyan Shangho (NKS) presents on their Cultural Bridging and Climate Challenge Fund projects

10 October: Anna facilitating on wild berry dips and cordials

17 October: Making/upcycling items for Christmas sale

24 October: Dawn demonstrating chutney making with Autumn harvest

31 October: Jim McCarthy skill share – talk on Africa; Angela Blacklock-Browne on Autism and Richard Allen on Canal History

7 November: Winter soup making

14 November: Anna facilitating balm-making for Christmas sale

21 November: Christmas sale items finished, labelled and price tagged

28 November: Anna facilitating session on DIY Christmas body care gifts; to be joined by NKS visitors

5 December: Dawn demonstrating Christmas cake making

12 December: Anna facilitating natural Christmas decorations and Wreath making; Christmas traditions and story telling

19 December: Christmas party with indoor Curling Competition

Come and join the fun, make new friends and learn new skills. Home made cake and refreshments always available.

The Canal Shed had a stall at the very successful Pizza and Pavlova event in the Drennan Hall Saturday 8 September and made a small profit selling cards it had made. Thanks to Geraldine and Jim for running the stall.








The Canal Shed at Polwarth is now working independently of the The Scottish Waterways Trust as their funding ran out. We thank them for their help and support in the past eighteen months. The shed is continuing with its members meeting still in the Drennan Hall and is now operating again from 10am to 1pm. It is planned for the shed to become a Scottish Charity Independent Organisation (SCIO)and Trustees have been appointed to take this forward.

Wednesday 5 September there were a variety of activities taking place. The Toad Abode’s new sign was planted by David. Diane was busy pruning a bush. Kitty and Geraldine sorted out the drying lavender and sorted boxes and planned Christmas sale items to make. David, Paul and Neil mended a precious wooden item that belonged to the church and continued with the lectern mending. The Canal Shed will be present at the Pizza and Pavlova at Polwarth event this Saturday 8 September when they will have cards and paper books to sell. Come and talk to them and find out more.









Pauline, Dawn, Jim, Anne and Anna held a Trustees meeting. They confirmed paperwork that is necessary to take the Shed forward and planned activities up to Christmas. We will be meeting with friends old and new before the Christmas party. There will be the popular wreath making nearer Christmas as well as our Christmas party with an indoor curling tournament. There might be some curling practising before then!

The Chairperson Jim presented Anna Canning with a memento of our appreciation of her time with us under The Scottish Waterways Trust grant. Anna will continue to work with us as we progress into the new year.

Come and join us.  It’s fun. And it will soon be the season for leaf collecting for mulching on the canalside and in the corner of the church garden.

CanShed meetings are held every Wednesday 10.00-12.00 at Drennan Hall, Polwarth Church, 36-38 Polwarth Terrace, Edinburgh EH11 1LU


At the Church Saturday Sundae Event on Saturday 16 June the Canal Shed made £225 through the sale of planters, books, cards, soap, coasters and lots of other items. Thanks to everyone who contributed and those who bought.














6 June – Canal Moths with Claire from the Scottish Waterways Trust

13 June – activities including making items for sale at the Saturday Sundae Canal Festival event at the gardens here on 16 June

20 June – Skillshare with shed member Neil called ‘Watt’

27 June – Willie out in the gardens lo0king for bees to identify

If you read the Update Polwarth Summer Edition 76, pages 16 and 17, you can read all about the changes and progress being made with the Canal Shed

Hope to see you soon Anna


THE CANAL SHED CELEBRATED ITS FIRST BIRTHDAY ON WEDNESDAY 7 FEBRUARY. Of course there was a special cake to celebrate this. WE LOOK FORWARD TO LOTS OF NEW AND EXCITING ACTIVITIES FOR THE SECOND YEAR. Upcycling of broken wooden chairs is just one new thing available to join in with. Come and give us a try.