The Scott Monument
The Scott Monument is a Victorian Gothic monument built to honour the famous Scottish author Sir Walter Scott. It stands in Princes Street Gardens and is opposite Jenners department store. The tower is 61.1 metres tall, and the small viewing deck near the top gives a panoramic view of central Edinburgh and its surroundings. This is reached by a narrow spiral staircase with 287 steps. It is built from Binnie shale; the oil which continues to leech from it has helped to glue the notoriously filthy atmosphere of Victorian Edinburgh (then nicknamed “Auld Reekie” — old smokey) to the tower, leaving it an unintended sooty-black colour. The council have spent many years trying to devise a clever way to clean the monument, but have since given up, deeming it an impossible task!