Been on a tour? Got a view on any manifestation of Trainspotting – the book, the play, the film? Got attitude or questions about my book?
Just fill in your comments below. It would be good to hear from you!
Last minute trip to Scotland after a gap of many years with my wife and three young adult daughters. We’re all big fans of the Trainspotting films and had found Tim’s Leith Walks following an online search. After a couple of emails, he agreed to take us on a tour at short notice: what a fantastic experience! Tim met up with us just as the heavens opened, and it didn’t stop. Despite this, Tim was able to bring the book, film and history of beautiful Leith alive with humour, passion and an incredible depth of local, political and social knowledge. He mixed things up with a bit of role play which was great fun and not as scary as it might sound. Asks questions, gets you thinking: issues feel as relevant today as they did back in the 80’s. Now reading Tim’s fascinating, well researched and written book, plus ordered Irvine Walsh’s prequel and sequel which had somehow passed us by. Highly recommend, not just for fans of Trainspotting but for anyone interested in social history or just on the look out for a unique, authentic experience.
A well-researched and insightful study of how the history and culture of Leith shapes the present Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 8 August 2020 Do you ever wish things could have been different? “Choose Life, Choose Leith” is an enormously well-researched book that delves into the history and culture of Leith and Edinburgh to give real insight into how the world portrayed in Trainspotting came into existence and how it has contributed to modern Scottish identity and to drugs policy. The author has lived locally and been involved in the community of Leith for much of his adult life and writes with authority. This is a book to read and keep by you for reference.
Had the pleasure of completing a walking tour with Tim in Leith last week. Having read his excellent book I had a great insight into Leith already but it was great to see the locations mentioned in Trainspotting/other Irvine Welsh work in the flesh. These included the Banana flats,the Persevere (Percy) pub, Queen Victoria statue, Central Bar,where Leith Central station once stood,and Leith Dockers Club. Re-enacting scenes from the book by reading out the dialogue with Tim added another dimension and was unique.Tim is an absolute gentleman and was a pleasure to do the tour with, I'd nearly do it again when I'm over next. Would 100% recommend.
Tim is utterly brilliant! We went on his tour in the pouring rain on 15 Feb and were captivated by his knowledge and stories. He really knows his subject and is passionate and articulate about it. Amazing analysis of both the novel and film giving a fascinating insight into Irvine Welsh’s story and the underlying themes. Local Leith history was revealed such as the bustling Kirkgate and the rather grand Central Station both of which are sadly no more. Tim transformed rain in Leith into sunshine on Leith! And we got to play the Trainspotting characters too 😊 Do grab any chance you can to do his tour. You’ll love it, ken!
We are from Italy, and the tour has been great! I read quite everything about Welsh, and I was so curious to see Leith and Leith Walk. Tim is special, and we'll keep a lovely remember of the tour. Even if you are a tourist, as we were, don't miss it, it's worth the time you are going to dedicate to it. Thank you Tim!
Highly informative tour given by the excellent Tim (who is a complete fount of knowledge regarding Trainspotting, Leith as well as British history in general - we were very impressed!) This is definitely a 'must do tour' for those living in Edinburgh or from further afield and gives a gritty insight into the darker or more alternative history of Leith/Edinburgh. The tour is also unbelievable value for money. I am not sure you would get a better value 2+ hour tour in or around Edinburgh, which is so jam-packed with such fascinating content. My dad and I would like to extend our thanks to Tim, all the best!
Amazing tour from Tim. Gripping and powerful, and I learned so much. Highly recommend for anyone who wants to actually learn something and go beyond a surface-level experience of Leith.
Went on Tim,s tour yesterday. I am an Edinburgh native, having lived there all my life, and thought I knew a lot about the city. I was wrong! Tim May want to correct me about Leith being part of Edinburgh but it was fascinating to hear his take on the Leith area and the links to Trainspotting. He talked about the book, the movie and the play and lost brought in references to other works by Irvine Welsh. I don’t want to spoil things by giving away too much detail but I would highly recommend this tour.
Having unearthed this within the vast Edinburgh Fringe programme, I was delighted that the weather was on our side on the morning of the tour. Trainspotting defined 90’s film for me and the recent T2 was the perfect sequel. This tour promised an opportunity to see Leith first hand and learn more about the film and the socio-economic history of Leith itself. Our guide for the tour, Tim Bell, was character personified and it was clear from the outset wanted this to be a participation event rather than him lecturing for the duration. The two hour plus tour took in various key locations and it was utterly fascinating to hear his insightful take on both the Trainspotting canon and Leith’s changes over the years. Thoroughly enjoyed every minute of the experience and with Tim’s addition of laminated extracts of the film’s screenplay which were handed out to members of the party to. read out - in character! I felt this really added to the overall experience and really made me smile. Highly recommended and anyone with even a passing interest in the films and Edinburgh’s ‘little brother’ should experience this tour.
Fortunate enough to go on Tim's 'Deid Dugs' tour on Sat 14/07. His broad knowledge of the book, film and Leith itself is immense. Not only was it thrilling to walk in many of the character's footsteps (as well as those of the author) it was a joy to discuss the themes and background to the Trainspotting story with Tim, a real expert on the text and wider aspects. Welsh's characters didn't pop out of thin air; they're firmly rooted in the buildings, ex-buildings and communities of Leith. It was the definite highlight of our trip to Edinburgh and I'm chuffed to bits that Tim accommodated us at quite short notice. Thanks again Tim.
Tim's tour yesterday was the absolute highlight of our Fringe trip this year. I was in awe to meet a man with so much knowledge and insight into a world which my social history loving head can't get enough of! We got to see the locations of some of the book's most memorable scenes as well as being given insight into local knowledge that we simply would never have known. I'm already 2/3 of the way through Tim's newly published book and can't put it down! it's teeming with all of the information and concepts which could never be fully explained into the 2 hour tour. If you are thinking about going on Tim's tour, go on Tim's tour!!!
Tim, congratulations on becoming a published author. Your diligence has paid off, you have given us the privilege of actually seeing your words in print and bringing to life our little corner of Edinburgh. https://amzn.to/2Ognizk
Really great tour with Tim around Trainspotting haunts. Enlightening, entertaining and very knowledgeable, Tim really helps the place and the story come alive. Thanks Tim!!
2nd May 2018 What a fantastic tour, insight to the book and the film, advantageous to of read the book but NOT a necessity, now re-reading the book I can visualise the scenes in my head. In addition to this tour and if you get the opportunity to see "Trainspotting Live", I believe it is coming back to the fringe festival this year (2018). Well worth the monies and recommend highly to go on this tour. Thank you Tim
A unique tour and nothing like we ever experienced. We where three people who took the tour and we all share share a great interest for both the book and the movie since way back. This tour really blew us away because it had an extra layer of something that really can’t be described. Tim is so devoted and i guess thats why it clicks with so many of the people who takes the tour. At the end of the tour it felt like we just started and by then we had been on the tour for almost three hours. If you love the book or the film or both this is a tour you need to take. Tim has really penetrated the book and he knows what he is talking about. Choose life, choose the tour!
Whether you\'re interested in Trainspotting the book, the movie, or the history of Leith and its tenuous relationship with Edinburgh and beyond, Tim\'s tour will cover all of the above and more. His recounting of the last 100 years of local and regional history paints a vivid backdrop. Seeing the locations in-person that inspired the characters and stories in Skagboys, Trainspotting and Porno was especially rewarding and informative. I\'ll be re-reading Welsh\'s series with new insight (and vocabulary). Looking forward to capping it off with Tim\'s upcoming book!
Such a brilliant, special, and honest tour that perfectly mixed the reality of Leith, unique local access & perspectives, and the literature/film of Trainspotting. Brilliant all around!
This tour was absolute unique! I get a 3 1/2 hour private tour only with Tim and his lector. He told me so much about the social background of Trainspotting, he read extracts of the book while we were stopping at the original scenes of the book and the film, he took me to an working men\'s club (if I\'m right, the famous \"bingo\" scene plays in this club) and he shared all his unlimited knowledge about the backgrounds of the the book, the movie and mainly Leith itself. So for me, it was not only a Trainspotting tour, but much more a socialcritical tour through a working class quarter, its decline and its resurrection. Thank you Tim, it was a great pleasure for me and I will never forget this. HIGHLY recommended!!
If you are a fan of Trainspotting (book or film), you just have to go on this tour! Tim will make you see the story with different eyes. He\'ll give you a lot of interesting background info about Irvine Welsh and the social life in Leith. And of course you\'ll visit some crucial places, where he\'ll read you some lines of the book - and you may help him. It was great fun and I learned a lot. Totally recommend it!
If you want to get a real touch of the history of Leith just call Tim. He \'ll guide you into an interesting trip around this place and you we\'ll have the opportunity to discover everything about Trainspotting, both the book and the movie.I highly recommend it and i think every Welsh fun would have to join. It is also very useful for those who wants to understand more about drugs addiction, a plague that really afflicted Leith during 80\'s. We\'ll have a great time during our tour!!