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Edinburgh Castle to take part in world's largest drawing festival

27 September 2011

Visitors to Edinburgh Castle this weekend will have the opportunity to take part in the world’s largest drawing festival.

The castle is participating in ‘The Big Draw’ which will see over 22 countries across the world participate in the annual campaign to bring communities together with their heritage or environment through drawing.

The event kicks off on 1st  October where members of the public will be able to take part in drawing workshops between 10am and 4pm where they will be tasked with  re-creating different parts of the castle. Visual artists will be on hand to run the workshops along with members of staff who will be able to give advice and information on how the different parts of the castle developed.

10 Historic Scotland sites properties will be participating in the ‘The Big Draw’.  In Edinburgh, sessions will also run at Craigmillar Castle between 10am and 4pm on the 2nd October and at Holyrood Park’s Education Centre on 9th October between 10am and 3pm.

A selection of drawings from each site will be brought together by a graphic designer to create an ‘ultimate’ castle which will incorporate in elements of Scotland’s most famous castles. This will go on display at each of the participating sites later in the month, along with a selection of pictures from the drawing workshops and background information on the campaign.

Catriona Parmenter for Historic Scotland said;

“It’s a great opportunity to bring together different groups, from schools and community groups through to wider visitors to learn more about the different sites and how they developed.

“This is the first time that we have attempted the creation of an ‘ultimate’ castle through drawing and we are very much looking forward to seeing the results exhibited across sites at the end of October”

“There are no restrictions, it’s very much about having fun and expressing yourself creatively as well as having the opportunity for your artwork to be displayed in heritage attractions across Scotland, and we look forward to welcoming budding artists throughout October!”

The event is part of an initiative by The Campaign for Drawing, an independent charity which aims to raise the profile of drawing as a a tool for thought, creativity, social and cultural engagement. This has won support from leading practitioners in the creative industries and in art, architecture and design colleges where drawing is fundamental to the training of students. However the campaign also takes a wider view, seeing drawing as a basic human skill useful in all walks of life.

More than 1,000 venues take part annually from national museums and heritage sites through to rural nursery schools.

‘The Big Draw’ events at Historic Scotland properties are open to all ages and are included as part of general admission. For more information please visit or

For further information, interviews and images

Paul Spence
Historic Scotland
0131 668 8731