Archaeodark Archaeology

“Glow in the ArchaeoDark” – History, Heritage and Archaeology events for 2017


The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute are pleased to be teaming up with DigIt2017 for a World Heritage Day event in Orkney as part of the ‘Scotland in Six’ on 18th April 2017.

Visit Scotland has announced a unique event line-up for 2017 themed year: Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology set to inspire us to #facethepast

A Great Roman Bake-Off,  large scale projections of Viking imagery, a live archaeological dig of St Kilda in Minecraft and a colourful international weaving festival are just a few of the events lined up to make history in 2017.

With over one third of visitors drawn to Scotland for its history and culture, VisitScotland has hailed the 2017 Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology as an exciting opportunity to relive Scotland’s fascinating past through a range of events and activities.

A total of nine events – supported by a £300,000 Signature Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology Events Fund have been announced with more to be revealed in the coming weeks.

Highlights of the programme (which includes both brand new events and new programmes within existing events) include

  • a spectacular sound and light projection event at New Lanark World Heritage Site to bring to life the mill as it was in the heart of the Industrial Revolution (Shining Lives Project).
  • The Heart of Neolithic Orkney will “Glow in the ArchaeoDark” on World Heritage Day (18th April) with interactive storytelling, music, food and glow-in-the-dark paint (Scotland in Six Project).
  • A unique event in the Outer Hebrides will celebrate the islands’ rich South Asian history with music and art collaboration, exhibitions and performances (Purvai Project).

The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology Signature Event Programme:

Edinburgh Georgian Shadows 23 Feb – 26 March 2017 Edinburgh

Scotland in Six

18 April 2017

(World Heritage Day)


Including Orkney!

Tradfest Edinburgh 26 Apr –7 May 2017


Paisley’s International Festival of Weaving 1 & 2 July 2017


Purvai August 2017 Stornoway


Follow the Vikings Roadshow & Festival 2 & 3 September 2017

8 & 9 September 2017

Horsepower 9 September 2017 Falkirk
Mary Queen of Scots Festival September 2017 Kinross and Loch Leven
Shining Lives Autumn 2017 New Lanark World Heritage Site

The year also provides the opportunity to promote and celebrate a much wider programme of events celebrating Scotland’s history, heritage and archaeology. Partner events within the year include

Scot:Lands, which kicks off the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology celebrations on 1 January with an adventurous journey across Edinburgh’s Old Town

Celtic Connections (19 Jan – 5 Feb) –  the UK’s premier celebration of Celtic music.  And at the end of January, the national bard will come into focus with Robert Burns events celebrating the poet’s rich history.

In April (1-16) Edinburgh International Science Festival will celebrate Scotland’s Themed Year with Moments in Time – a family friendly outdoor installation, situated on the Mound featuring a series of iconic Scottish police boxes that will ‘transport’ visitors back in time to pivotal moments in Scotland’s scientific history.

Over the summer season, visitors and residents alike can soak up Scottish historical culture with the Festival of Museums (May), a major Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Jacobite exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland (June – Nov) and in August, the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo will unite with the Scottish Diaspora to create a ‘Splash of Tartan’.

Scotland will be celebrating a number of significant anniversaries through the historical year including the 70th anniversary of Edinburgh as a world leading festival city (with early celebrations beginning at Edinburgh Hogmanay’s Midnight Moment), the 20th anniversary of Scottish Crannog Centre, 250th anniversary of Edinburgh New Town Plan, 30th anniversary of Beltane Fire Society and the 400th anniversary of the General Register of Sasines –the oldest public land register in the world.

The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017 will begin on 1 January 2017 and end on 31 December 2017.  For more information, please visit: