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News > Former Pupil News > Bonham Babies

Bonham Babies

Bonham Babies - are you out there?

In 1950, I was born in 'The Private Clinic' at 35 Drumsheugh Gardens in Edinburgh's New Town, many years before the same site became The Bonham Hotel, as it remains today. Operated as a Maternity facility, The Private Clinic occupied the site from 1939 to 1951 before being sold to Edinburgh University as student accommodation, then called Muir House, providing residencies for students attending the University, but from outside of Edinburgh.

The Bonham Hotel proudly boasts that a number of people, who were born in The Private Clinic, often return to the building to enjoy the facilities offered by The Bonham...and we are all referred to as: 'Bonham Babies'. I have the advantage of living locally.

I have no interest on the Hotel ownership, but I offer help if they wish to research the history of the site, it's previous owners and occupiers, so I am hoping to find other Heriot's Former Pupils who were also born in the building - are you out there?

Recently, The Bonham allowed me to place a commemorative plaque, very temporarily, on the face of the building and record the event...with purely humorous you can see in the attached photograph.

When I turned 70 years-of-age, in May 2020, I wanted to hold a party within the Hotel...on the basis of; "well, how many people can hold their 70th Birthday Party in the very same building in which they were born?" Unfortunately, the Covid Pandemic scuppered my plans and the party never happened as intended in that year/venue.

I would be very interested to know if any of my contemporaries, born in The Private Clinic, also became Heriot's pupils? 

One I do know well is Esmond (Esy) Smith but surely there must be others...and remember that, although the NHS was launched in 1948, private facilities thrived for some years longer until the enormity of the task of bringing the NHS into action was more fully implemented.

Please do let me know if you too are one of the Bonham Babies? 

Gordon Y Watson (year of 1969)

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