Group welcomes image

ARBROATH Abbey could be set to receive its very own high quality digital image of the Declaration of Arbroath.

The National Records of Scotland are to investigate providing Historic Scotland, custodians of the Abbey, with the image of a contemporary copy of the document.

And this news has been welcomed by the newly formed Arbroath Abbey Action Group (AAAG), which is promoting tourism and the importance of the historic site.

The commitment to provide the image has been received following an approach from Graeme Dey on behalf of the group to Fiona Hyslop, Scotland’s cabinet secretary for culture and external affairs.

Harry Ritchie, chairman of the AAAG, said: “We had asked if it might be possible to loan the contemporary copy of the Declaration of Arbroath to the Abbey for a period to assist in driving up visitor numbers.

“Unfortunately, owing to the document being extremely fragile it has to be kept in specially controlled conditions under close supervision of expert conservators.

“But George MacKenzie, keeper of the Records of Scotland, has offered to consider supplying a very high quality digital image and to discuss this option with Historic Scotland.

“I know that Historic Scotland are quite interested in that prospect and the possibilities it might open up for promoting our Abbey”.