At the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Centre, there is one question we are asked very frequently.
“Did Arthur Conan Doyle live here?”
The answer is no. Whilst we believe that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was likely to have visited 25 Palmerston Place during his life in connection with his political endeavours, the Centre was never home to the man himself.
Built in 1881, the magnificent Victorian Townhouse was originally owned and lived in by William McEwan – brewer, politician and philanthropist.
So what’s the connection to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle?
The building was bought over in 2011 by the Palmerston Trust and operates as a Spiritualist Centre for the benefit of the mind, body and spirit, and is also host to a Spiritualist Church. Whilst Arthur Conan Doyle is arguably most well known for bringing the legendary Sherlock Holmes to life through his novels, it is less well known that he was a prolific Spiritualist. Doyle dedicated the later years of his life to promoting Spiritualism throughout the world and we found it only fitting to commemorate his life and achievements by naming such a beautiful and grand building after him in his home town of Edinburgh.
As well as being a Spiritualist Centre, we also pay tribute to Arthur Conan Doyle with our Sherlock Holmes Tea Room which is open Monday – Friday 11am – 3pm. Our library is home to a number of Sherlock Holmes inspired books which the public are more than welcome to come and browse.