The museum of a famous Scots regiment has launched a new app offering virtual tours of its Edinburgh Castle-based museum depiction of its stirring history.
Known primarily as an Edinburgh and West Lothian regiment, the Royal Scots – senior infantry regiment of the British army – is marking the centenary of the end of the First World War by upgrading its online facilities.
Formed in 1633, the Royal Scots was the oldest regiment in the British Army, hence its unofficial nickname “Pontius Pilate’s Bodyguard”, and fought in battles ranging from Culloden – on the government side – to Waterloo, and inevitably played a major role in both World Wars and subsequent campaigns.
During the 1914-1918 war the Royal Scots raised 35 battalions (each of around 1,000 men), and received 71 Battle Honours and six Victoria Crosses.
More than 100,000 Royal Scots fought in the Great War – enough to fill Murrayfield Stadium twice over – with 46,000 of those wounded as well as the 11,313 who died.
As part of the run-up to November’s centenary of the Armistice which ended the war it has unveiled the app aimed at people who can’t easily make the trip to the museum in Edinburgh Castle.
Museum bosses believe the feature will be of particular interest to those researching The Royal Scots, and Military History by academics, educationalists, authors and historians worldwide.
The new technology has been designed to enhance the visitor experience at the Regimental Museum and lasts for ten minutes.
Colonel Martin Gibson said: “Our latest exciting initiative is available to enhance the experience of both visitors to our Regimental Museum within Edinburgh Castle, which is visited by half a million people a year, and worldwide visitors to our website who wish to learn about our history.
“This is only the start of our overall project to virtualise our Regimental heritage to ensure that a significant part of Scotland’s history is preserved and protected way into the future.”
The Royal Scots has also recently launched its interactive World War One Roll of Honour covering all Royal Scots who died in the First World War, which already has attracted wide interest from all round the globe as well as closer to home. Descendants of those men and other researchers will be able to access the list, which is believed to be the first to be compiled on a regimental basis, via the Trust’s website.
Col Gibson, who was the Commanding Officer of the 1st Battalion of the regiment for three years of his 30-year army career, added: “An excellent working relationship exists between Historic Environment Scotland and The Royal Scots Museum, but castle entrance fees do not directly benefit our museum which is funded entirely from our charitable trust.
“Any donations or support for our project would be hugely appreciated.”
The new app can be downloaded from Google Play or Apple store using a search for “Royal Scots”.