Scottish Heritage Angel Awards

The 12-strong shortlist for the first ever Scottish Heritage Angel Awards has been announced

From ancient sea caves in Wemyss to the Maid of the Loch paddle steamer, and from Glasgow’s Necropolis to the archaeology of Orkney, 12 heritage projects from right across Scotland have been shortlisted to see the ‘Angels’ behind them celebrated in the inaugural Scottish Heritage Angel Awards.

The shortlist was announced on Monday, August 24, and the winner will be announced in a grand prizegiving ceremony in Edinburgh on September 28.

“…the individuals and communities in Scotland go above and beyond to preserve their heritage”

Funded by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, the Awards – the first of their kind in Scotland – celebrate the significant role that is carried out by volunteers in helping to better understand, appreciate and protect Scotland’s heritage and history.

“I am delighted that the efforts of individuals and communities in Scotland working to preserve their heritage are to be recognised through these awards,” said Andrew Lloyd Webber.

“I offer huge congratulations to all those shortlisted. From ancient sea caves to a Victorian garden cemetery, the variety is incredible and demonstrates just how much the individuals and communities in Scotland go above and beyond to preserve their heritage.”

Local volunteers working to engage the community with local history, architecture and archaeology

The shortlist of ‘Heritage Angels’ was selected from nominees whose voluntary work has benefited various types of heritage projects, including local volunteers working to engage the community with local history, architecture and archaeology and community groups undertaking landscape surveys and restoration projects that have relied on and benefited from the involvement of local volunteers.

Following judging by an expert panel, which includes Scottish broadcaster Sally Magnusson, shortlisted entrants will be invited to the Scottish Heritage Angel Awards’ inaugural prizegiving ceremony in Edinburgh on September 28.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs, said: “This shortlist of heritage volunteers and groups reveals the diverse and vibrant cultural heritage that is held within communities across the country, whilst demonstrating the enduring commitment and work that is carried out by them on variety of worthy projects helping to highlight and celebrate Scotland’s wider historic environment.

The Scottish Heritage Angel Awards are being delivered in a partnership between the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, the Scottish Government, Historic Scotland, The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland, Scottish Civic Trust and Archaeology Scotland.

‘The significant contribution volunteers make to our culturally rich historic environment’

“The Angel Awards initiative is a wonderful opportunity to recognise the significant contribution that volunteers throughout Scotland make to our culturally rich historic environment,” said John Pelan, Director of the Scottish Civic Trust.

The four award categories are Investigating & Recording, Caring & Protecting, Sharing & Celebrating, and Capacity Building, and the much sought-after Lifetime Contribution to the Historic Environment award.

You can find the full Shortlist on the right, and for more information on the categories, click here.

Full Shortlist

Investigating and Recording:

  • Friends of Glasgow Necropolis for the surveying and archiving of graves and monuments, Glasgow
  • The Joseph Thomson Group for the establishment of a heritage centre, Dumfries and Galloway
  • Dean of Guild Court Plans Project Volunteer Group for the creation of a searchable resource for Dunfermline’s rich built heritage, Fife


Caring and Protecting:

  • Forres Heritage Trust for the restoration of two local historic landmarks, Nelson Tower and The Tolbooth, Moray
  • Sanday Archaeology Group for their work to preserve archaeological heritage, Orkney
  • Helmsdale Station Volunteers for the restoration of Helmsdale railway station buildings, Sutherland


Sharing and Celebrating:

  • Loch Lomond Steamship Company for their work on the Maid of the Loch and the Balloch Steam Slipway, West Dunbartonshire
  • Here We Are for the Our Houses: Their Stories project, Argyll
  • Scottish Fire and Rescue Volunteers for their Scottish fire heritage project, South Lanarkshire and across Scotland


Capacity Building:

  • Hebridean Connections for the creation of an online resource charting local history and heritage, Outer Hebrides
  • Scottish Waterways Trust – Canals College for their canal and waterways heritage work, Falkirk
  • Save the Wemyss Ancient Cave Society for work on the six ancient sea caves which feature Pictish stone carvings, Fife