Friday, 14 October 2011

Digitilisation of Scotland’s Heritage vital to economic future of the Highlands & Islands

Jamie McGrigor, Highlands & Islands Conservative MSP, took part in today’s Scottish Government debate in the Scottish Parliament on the digital future of Scotland’s heritage. Jamie argued that digitilisation of Scotland’s heritage was vital to the future of the economy of the Highlands & Islands.
Speaking today, and following a meeting earlier in the afternoon at Parliament where Jamie held with Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor (Jamie’s own Clan Chief), The head of the Standing Council of Scottish Clan Chiefs, where he discussed the importance of family history tourism, he said:
“I associate myself with the many positive comments about the Scottish Ten project and I am delighted that two of the three Scottish UNESCO World Heritage Sites that have already been recorded by laser scanning- Neolithic Orkney and St Kilda- are in my region of the Highlands & Islands. I expect I am one of the few MSPs to have actually set foot on St Kilda which I did in the 1980s. I will never forget arriving at the islands on a June morning and the sky going black with the literally millions of seabirds who rose to greet us- it is a sight I shall never forget.
“ Genealogical tourism is already of real economic importance and there is huge potential for growth given the size of the Scottish Diaspora and the ever growing interest in family history. In the run up to today’s debate I received email correspondence from Nothing to do with Inspector Rebus but an organisation which aims to have one central online facility for all of Scotland’s burial and cremation records- this type of initiative is to be encouraged. People like to find their ancestors, they like to find their roots, especially if their roots are in Scotland.
“ I also commend the work of the team at the National Records of Scotland- under the outstanding leadership of my friend George Mackenzie- for their ScotlandsPeople website which is a world-class resource.”