Question S4O-00585: Year of Homecoming 2014

Bill Walker: To ask the Scottish Government what progress is being made regarding the programme for the year of homecoming 2014.

Current Status: Taken in the Chamber on 19/01/2012

Fiona Hyslop (Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs): We are working with partners to develop the events and activities that will take place during homecoming 2014. It is envisaged that the programme for 2014 will feature a number of major events, a regional programme across Scotland and a celebration of key anniversaries. Announcements on the detailed programme will follow in due course. My colleague the Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Tourism leads on homecoming 2014.

Bill Walker: I thank the cabinet secretary for her helpful response. Does she agree that the city of Dunfermline—as Scotland’s ancient capital, the burial place of King Robert the Bruce, the location of the highly successful annual Bruce festival and the birthplace of Scotland’s greatest philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie—is an ideal candidate to host major Scottish cultural and historical events in 2014?

Fiona Hyslop: I am sure that the member will make the case for that and encourage people in his constituency to grab the opportunities. The town of Dunfermline played a constructive role in previous homecoming activities, of course. Indeed, I distinctly remember fantastic artwork that involved light and candles in Dunfermline abbey. I am sure that there will be great opportunities to take that forward for 2014.

One of the themes of homecoming 2014 will be ancestry, so there will be opportunities to capitalise again on Scotland’s history and diaspora—the last is important. I am sure that members across the chamber will want to grab opportunities to promote their areas, to increase tourism and to grow their constituencies’ economies as a result of homecoming 2014.

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