Who Do You Think Deserves A Commemorative Plaque?

Commemorative plaque to John Logie Baird, inventor of television.

Historic Environment Scotland are asking the Scottish public which figures from history they would like to see celebrated with a Commemorative Plaque.

Nominations are now open for the national Commemorative Plaque Scheme, which has seen diverse figures from Scottish history remembered – from famous inventors like James Watt and John Logie Baird, to less well-known figures, including the Edinburgh Seven, who pioneered education for women.

Famous Scots are nominated by the public using an online form, then celebrated by the installation of a plaque on a building connected with their achievements.

To celebrate the life and work of significant historical figures

The scheme is intended to celebrate the life and work of significant historical figures by highlighting the link between them and a building connected with their work or life. This highlights not only the life of the person but provides an insight into the social history of local architecture.

“The form of a building can say a great deal about the character of the particular person who lived or worked there,” said Martin Ross, Policy and Projects Manager for Historic Environment Scotland.

“It can confirm assumptions or, in other cases, come as a complete surprise, casting a new aspect on the individual concerned.

‘A wonderful and visual way to recognise people’

“The Commemorative Plaque scheme is a wonderful and visual way to recognise people who have made a difference to the world around us, as well as to publicise their links with buildings that many may consider insignificant.

“Plaques have been made to recognise the contribution of famous poets, arctic explorers, inventors, literary figures, artists, politicians, inventors, and drivers of social change. I am sure that this year’s nomination process will again provide us with some fascinating individuals for consideration.”

A significant difference to Scotland and its people

Nominations will be accepted for anyone whose life and achievements have made a significant difference to Scotland and its people – or those who have gained international recognition for their accomplishments.

The closing date for completed submissions is 31st January 2016. An independent panel will then consider all the nominations and select the successful applicants, which will be announced in Spring 2016.

To submit an online nomination, click here.

The Edinburgh Seven

  • The first women to be admitted on a degree programme at a British University were commemorated with the unveiling of a plaque at the University of Edinburgh, where they matriculated to study medicine in 1869.
  • Known as ‘The Edinburgh Seven’, these women were Sophia Jex-Blake, Isabel Thorne, Edith Pechey, Matilda Chaplin, Helen Evans, Mary Anderson, and Emily Bovell. They were nominated by Jo Spiller, Learning Technology Senior Advisor at the University of Edinburgh.


On October 1, 2015, Historic Scotland and RCAHMS came together to form Historic Environment Scotland (HES), which is responsible for caring for, protecting and promoting Scotland’s historic environment.