The earliest reference to Tollcross dates form 1439, with the area also appearing on several 16th century maps. The name is assumed to derive from a crossroads where payments were collected from travellers entering the city.
The pillar clock in the middle of the junction is one of four similar clocks made by James Ritchie and Son of Edinburgh in 1901. Junction improvements in 1974 led to its removal, but wide public support for its return led to its being re-sited close to its original position
There are a number of interesting buildings in the area, including the tenements on the east side of Home Street, designed by noted New Town architect James Gillespie Graham to provide ‘room and kitchen’ accommodation for poorer families.
The area was an important employment hub and home to rope works, paraffin works, a saw mill and the Lochrin Distillery which was later replaced by the Lochrin Iron Works.
Below are some images from Edinburgh Capital Collection of old Tollcross.