Meet the Team

At Invisible Cities we don’t believe in labels or stereotypes. We want to show that everyone has great potential, a fact reflected in our tour guides.

Each of our talented tour guides have experience of homelessness or social disadvantage. They have seen Edinburgh from many more angles than the average tour guide can offer, be it the famous landmarks or the social enterprises that make this great city what it is. Meet the team below:

Our Edinburgh Guides

Biffy

Hi, My name is Biffy I am 27 and I am a tour guide at Invisible (Edinburgh). My tours are based on powerful women of Edinburgh and also a different side of the city where I will show you charities and projects who help homeless people. I was homeless too, I used to never have a permanent place to stay, never knowing what to do next.

I became addicted to heroin a few years ago but after being caught for shoplifting, I had to get myself clean and I kicked my habit! I have a daughter with my partner Sonny (another Invisible (Edinburgh) guide) Charlotte. I got pregnant when I was getting myself clean and it made me even more motivated to succeed! I also volunteer at Social Bite, a chain of Sandwich Shop with a difference, we feed the homeless on a regular basis. This is where I met Zakia (Invisible Edinburgh’s founder and boss lady!) As soon as I heard about the project, I was immediately excited about it! We have three other guides who will show you another side of their Edinburgh. All of our tours are unique and exciting. I hope to see you soon in Edinburgh! Love, Biffy x

Sonny

Hi, my name is Sonny! Thank you for showing interest in my tour and my story. I am very proud to be part of the team at Invisible (Edinburgh) as this is a city I was homeless in a few years ago and so I know parts of Edinburgh you probably don’t.

My tour is based on Crimes and Punishment as I have experienced prison myself (though for minor crimes) and Edinburgh is full of stories of murders, gangsters and prisoners!

A few years ago, my life took a bad turn and I was homeless on the streets of Edinburgh. My girlfriend (Biffy-another tour guide at Invisible Edinburgh) and I were addicted to Heroin but we are now both clean and very much looking forward to what the future is bringing. Today I also work with Social Bite, a chain of sandwich shop with a difference. 1in 4 members of staff come from a homelessness background and we give out a lot of food and money back to charity. 

I look forward to seeing you in my tour, I promise we will have fun and we will see a side of the capital that will amaze you! Love, Sonny

Paul

Paul, an Edinburgh local, will give you a tour of Leith, a buzzing port district located in the northern part of the city which is rich in local history. Immerse yourself in the vibrant cultural worlds of Leith and Shore, two of Edinburgh’s most famous neighborhoods while you listen to to Paul’s own story detailing his life growing up and living in Leith. Learn about the history of the “Trainspotting Generation,” the young people who were affected by the area’s pervasive heroin addiction issue through Paul’s passionate explanation of literature and films surrounding the topic.

Angie

I am Angie and I am from Oz but I have lived in Edinburgh for 5 years. I am still here after all this time because I love the arts and Edinburgh is the festival city!

I came here to be close to my daughter but I stayed because I love it!  I've continued my love for the arts right through my life from where I began as a drama teacher.

I want to enthuse people about everything Edinburgh has to offer. There are so many things to do here - hidden stuff! I want to make them aware of all the possibilities the city has to offer!

So when you come to My Edinburgh-Festival City Tour, we will be able to discuss all arts and festivals the city has to offer!

Our Manchester Guides

Danny

Danny is an adopted Mancunion who was on the streets for 4 and a half year. He started writing poetry round about five years ago after meeting Arthur and Martha who ignited Danny’s interested in poetry. It inspired him and rebuilt his confidence to help move off the streets. Now, Danny does a lot of volunteering. He says "People ask me what I get out of it? I say its not what i get out of it but what I can put back into it."

Our Glasgow Guides

Daniel

My name is Daniel, I'm forty five and I'm originally from Glasgow. I'm proud to be the first guide in Glasgow for Invisible cities.

Like some of the other guides, I was homeless and roofless in Glasgow for a few years and went through some of the problems associated with this before coming through them.

I used to sell the Big Issue in Glasgow's west end, till recently when I stopped to go to uni. This is how I was first put in touch with Invisible cities.

My tour is "Crime and Punishment in the Merchant City" where I will tell you about some of the law breakers and law makers from Glasgow's past. I will also point out some of the invisible parts of the city that relate to my own past too.

I look forward to welcoming you on my tour.

Our awards & recognitions

  • Thistle Award
  • Social Enterprise
  • Enterprise Award 2018

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