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Exhibition to showcase best of Historic Scotland in year of success

17 February 2012

                                     Historic Scotland’s Scottish Ten laser scanning project has produced stunning images of some of the world’s major heritage sites, including Skara Brae in Orkney. The agency’s scanning experts will be attending the Exhibition on February 29th to explain more about this global project. (Copyright: CDDV.)

Historic Scotland’s Exhibition at the end of this month will celebrate a remarkable year for the agency with a range of fascinating displays illustrating the major projects and initiatives that have made the past 12 months so successful.

The agency is on track to achieve an all-time record for visitor numbers, in a year which also saw the completion of the £12 million refurbishment of Stirling Castle Palace and Edinburgh Castle picking up the “Oscar” of UK tourism at the British Travel Awards.

The free Exhibition in Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow on February 29th will also showcase Historic Scotland’s aims and ambitions, and staff will be on hand to explain ongoing projects, which are amongst the biggest and most ambitious in the agency’s history.

Historic Scotland’s Chief Executive, Ruth Parsons said: “Historic Scotland has achieved remarkable results in recent years. Last year we had our most successful year ever in terms of visitors to our sites, and this year we are on track to celebrate another record-breaking number of visitors.

“Combined with Edinburgh Castle winning UK Heritage Attraction of the Year, and the completion of magnificent projects such as the Stirling Castle Royal Palace refurbishment, the agency has gone from strength to strength.

“This Exhibition celebrates these successes and our plans for the future. With ongoing projects including the new Bannockburn Visitor Centre, in conjunction with The National Trust for Scotland, the Scottish Ten digital laser scanning programme and the new National Conservation Centre at Stirling, the agency is set for even greater achievements.”  

Visitors to the Exhibition will be able to talk to Historic Scotland staff, and gain an insight into the agency’s 345 sites, which range from Jarlshof Prehistoric and Norse settlement in Shetland to Caerlaverock Castle in Dumfries in Galloway, and include the UNESCO World Heritage sites of Skara Brae in Orkney and the Antonine Wall.

Conservation experts will explain how Historic Scotland’s Scottish Ten project has taken the agency’s world-leading laser scanning technology to some of the world’s most renowned iconic monuments, including Skara Brae, Mount Rushmore in the United States and Rani ki Vav stepwell in India.

Visitors can also see how plans are progressing to create a new visitor centre at Bannockburn, in conjunction with The National Trust for Scotland.

This new attraction, due to open in 2014 for the 700th anniversary of the Battle, has been awarded a grant of £5 million by Historic Scotland, and its cutting edge technology will feature on-screen three-dimensional fighting figures alongside new battlefield interpretation, landscaping work and enhanced educational facilities.

The event will also offer an insight into Scotland’s other battlefields, and World Heritage sites, and explain forthcoming major re-interpretation projects at Iona Abbey and Elgin Cathedral.

A major part of the agency’s work is protecting valuable properties through listing and scheduling, and staff will be available to answer questions on this wide-ranging topic, which encompasses around 47,000 listed buildings and 8,000 scheduled monuments.

Advice will also be offered to anyone seeking more information on the conservation and care of listed buildings.

Education and outreach, a major part of Historic Scotland’s mission, is also represented. The agency is involved with community and voluntary groups, adult learners, social inclusion programmes and schools across the country.

Junior guides are a major part of the agency’s schools programme, and a group will be in attendance to explain their role in engaging youngsters with their local Historic Scotland monument, including Gaelic guides working at Edinburgh Castle.

The Exhibition offers a rare chance to view a display of precious objects from the agency’s Collection – which totals more than 30,000 objects across 150 sites, and will include ancient coins, a nautical painting, a mediaeval shoe fragment, and Neolithic pottery.

For those keen to explore the full range of Historic Scotland’s 345 sites, staff from membership will be offering advice on the full range of member options, which give free entry to all sites and a host of other benefits, including retail discounts and a free quarterly magazine.

With Historic Scotland participating in the Year of Creative Scotland 2012, a stand will also explain the full calendar of activities, and opportunities to get involved with a range of events including film, writing, comedy and music festivals.

The Historic Scotland Exhibition on February 29th is open to all, in the Grand Foyer (first floor) of the Grand Central Hotel, from 1.30pm till 6.15pm.

Notes for editors:

  • The Historic Scotland Exhibition, “Our Historic Environment: Sharing the Vision”, is running alongside the Historic Scotland Conference, at the Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow, on Wednesday, February 29th, 2012. The Exhibition is open from 1.30pm till 6.15pm.

  • Historic Scotland is an executive agency of the Scottish Government charged with safeguarding the nation’s historic environment. The agency is fully accountable to Scottish Ministers and through them to the Scottish Parliament.

  • The Year of Creative Scotland began on January 1, 2012 and will spotlight and celebrate Scotland’s cultural and creative strengths on a world stage. Through a dynamic and exciting year-long programme of activity celebrating our world-class events, festivals, culture and heritage, the year puts Scotland’s culture and creativity in the international spotlight with a focus on cultural tourism and developing the events industry and creative sector in Scotland. More information about the programme can be found at:

  • The Year of Creative Scotland is a Scottish Government initiative led in partnership by EventScotland, VisitScotland, Creative Scotland and VOCAL. More information and resources to help businesses engage with Year of Creative Scotland are available at

                                                     Year of Creative Scotland 2012

For further information

David Gray
Communications and Media Officer
Communications and Media
0131 668 8588 or 07854 366 805