7 good news stories that show how Edinburgh locals are keeping their spirits up

7 good news stories that show how Edinburgh locals are keeping their spirits up


We’re in the midst of a very uncertain time, but that’s not stopping the Scots in Edinburgh from smiling

The spread of COVID-19 is, understandably, causing a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty around the world. Not only are we all concerned from a health perspective, but the disruption to daily life has also taken its toll.

The UK Government has instructed us all to stay inside as much as possible, meaning shopping only for essentials, engaging in one walk or run per day, and avoiding spending time with friends and loved ones who live in a different house.

So it’s no surprise that many of us are feeling the strain of this. It’s easy to get bogged down in worries about the impact of the coronavirus, but in Edinburgh people are devising fantastic ways of keeping their spirits up.

In true Scottish capital style, the people of Edinburgh are ensuring that the show goes on. From viral grannies to rainbows in windows, Edinburgh locals are finding fun and inspiring ways to keep going.

Here are some of our favourite good news stories from the Scottish capital. These are sure to put a smile on your face.


Movie nights with Edinburgh Gin

One of the things we’re all missing right now is being able to do simple things with friends, such as going out for a meal, meeting up for a coffee or enjoying a trip to the cinema. Well, Edinburgh Gin is working to counter that.

The famous Edinburgh tipple brands invited its fans to tune in together for a screening of Groundhog Day at 8pm on Netflix.

In order to ease the strain of social distancing measures, the movie night was streamed via Netflix’s ‘Netflix Party’ option, meaning viewers could engage with each other in real time via a live chat panel.

The brand also hosted an in-movie quiz for viewers, offering a host of fabulous prizes. The event was a great reminder that, while we’re all separated physically, we don’t have to be alone on an emotional level.


Pipe up for key workers

Throughout the UK, people have been showing their appreciation and respect for NHS workers by clapping. However, some Scots are choosing a much more, well, Scottish option.

The National Piping Centre wanted to pay thanks to everyone working hard to keep the UK going, from delivery drivers to doctors and nurses, by playing a nationwide rendition of ‘Scotland the Brave’.

Even those who don’t play the bagpipes were encouraged to join in, sing along and cheer for those working so hard.


The rise of #WeeGranny

For many of us, being isolated from family members is the hardest part of the current situation, especially being away from our elderly loved ones who are more at risk. Perhaps that’s why a video shared by Edinburgh local @Islaanne1 on Twitter struck such a chord.

Alongside the caption “Got this update from my wee granny. 93 and still going strong”, Isla treated her followers to a reassuring update from her granny, who says:

“Hello everybody. I’m still here. I tell you I’m like a bad penny, there’s no getting rid of me.

I hope you’re all keeping well and doing what you’re told. Keep to the rules and you will all be fine, it will all pass. Bye, bye for now.”

Since posting, the clip has gone viral with more than 7 million views and 440,000 likes. Other users have called for daily updates from Isla’s grandma, who has been dubbed #WeeGranny, and plenty of people say they have found her message comforting in these times of uncertainty.

You can see the heart-warming clip for yourself here.


NHS workers play The Proclaimers

A virtual brass band comprised of Scottish NHS workers has been delighting people all over the internet. With a pledge to ‘stay home and save lives’, NHS staff performed the iconic Scottish classic ‘I’m Gonna Be’ by The Proclaimers to remind people to stay home while they go the extra mile for the nation.

The idea was the brainchild of student nurse and trombone player Eilidh Houston, who brought NHS staff from all over Scotland together, including Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dumfries and Galloway.

Eilidh said they had expected to reach “maybe 1,000 views” and were stunned when, in less than 24 hours, they had acquired more than 100,000.


Teddies and rainbows

Up and down the country, rainbows and teddy bears have been appearing in windows as a way to boost morale and show solidarity during these uncertain times, and the Scottish capital is no exception.

Families and households are working to stay positive in Edinburgh, and the simple act of hanging a rainbow in the window has become a way to do this. The posters, many of which have been drawn or painted by children, can often be seen sporting messages for NHS workers during this time.

These messages include “Thank You NHS”, “Be Kind” and “Smiling Doesn’t Give You COVID-19”. On rainbow sports the text: “Be Kind. Thank You to the NHS Staff and Volunteers, Especially Our Auntie Sarah”.

Teddy bears have also been spotted in many an Edinburgh window, inspired by author of popular children’s book ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ Michael Rosen, who was recently revealed to be ill with the virus.

It’s a sweet and simple way to show support, and Guardian photography Murdo MacLeod took to the streets of Edinburgh to capture just some of these hopeful messages. You can see the pictures for yourself here.


James McAvoy donates to heroes

We all know that care workers and NHS staff are under a huge amount of pressure at the minute, so it’s great to see the most privileged members of society lending a hand, and that’s exactly what Edinburgh native and screen star James McAvoy has done.

McAvoy donated a massive £275,000 towards a doctor-run crowdfunder to provide essential PPE equipment to the NHS as they fight COVID-19.

The campaign, named ‘Masks for Heroes’, was initially founded in attempt to raise £200,000 but has now reached more than £1 million, with donations flooding in from all over the UK.

The equipment the team of doctors are trying to raise money for includes gloves, masks, gowns and visors.


Lothian grandad gets a nice surprise

A man from East Lothian was treated to a care package full of treats and a note left at his door. The note read: “To the man we wave to through the window! We were really lucky to receive extra food so thought we’d make you a wee bag of treats! Hope you are keeping well!”

The note was signed off by Lindsay, Louie, Ellis and Rosie the dog.

William, 88, is currently in lockdown as per the Government’s guidelines. His granddaughter Chloe said that the package “really cheered him up” while he’s been confined to the house, and that it contained a range of treats including “cold meat, pasta, cheese, biscuits, cakes and sweets.”

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