Robert Louis Stevenson Day celebrated in Edinburgh

Photograph of Robert Louis Stevenson taken by Hawker of Bournemouth in 1886.
Photograph of Robert Louis Stevenson taken by Hawker of Bournemouth in 1886.
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ROBERT Louis Stevenson Day, the annual celebration of the life and legacy of one of the Capital’s most famous writers, is celebrated on Sunday with a programme of crime-themed events across the city.

Ali Bowden, director of Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust says, “We don’t think of Stevenson as a crime writer but his links to that genre run so deep that RLS Day this year lets us look at his lesser known early crime writing.

“Stevenson was inspired by what was happening around him, from the stories of the criminals Burke and Hare, and Deacon Brodie, to the famous Appin Murder that inspired Stevenson’s novel Kidnapped, now 130 years old.

Events include Kidnapped 130 at Trinity House Maritime Museum in The Kirkgate, Leith, 11am and 2pm, which celebrates the 130th anniversary of Stevenson’s literary classic as Alan Rankin recalls his 2016 voyage to re-enact the novel’s epic smuggling route around Scotland.

At The Hawes Inn, Newhalls Road, South Queensferry, at 8pm, An Evening of RLS: 130 Years of Kidnapped, brings the man himself to life.

It’s 1886 and Stevenson is staying at the Hawes Inn to finish his latest novel... but the largest steel structure in the world is being built outside.

With his friend Colvin, he returns to the bar where he gives an impromptu recital of some of his work. Starring John Shedden and Peter Berry.

Earlier in the day, The Menikoff Lecture at Central Library, George IV Bridge, 6pm, finds Stevenson expert Menikoff focussing on Stevenson’s criminal tales.

At The Scottish Storytelling Centre, 7.30pm, the RLS Fellowship showcase a night of live literature, poetry and spoken word.

At 2pm at the same venue, Kidnapped: When Kilts Were Banned, finds two actors lift the novel off the page.

For more details of RLS Day visit