Rebels with a Cause

Jacobite-themed weekend of storytelling, live music, tours, exhibitions and a quiz

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Rebels with a Cause

In the same month as we remember Guy Fawkes’ rather unwelcome trip to the Houses of Parliament, that building’s Scottish counterpart is hoping for some friendlier visitors. Held over the St Andrew’s weekend, Rebels with a Cause is a mix of storytelling, live music, drama workshops, tours, exhibition and quiz, all exploring the Jacobite cause.

It’s also a great chance to see inside the Scottish Parliament’s remarkable building at Holyrood. ‘One of the things we work really hard at as an institution is to make people aware that this is a Parliament that is open and accessible,’ says Presiding Officer, Alex Fergusson. ‘And by running events like this, we can say to people look this is actually your Parliament, it’s open to you – come in and enjoy yourself.’

The four-day event ties in with a fascinating exhibition looking at the 1715 and 1745 Risings, and the impact the Jacobites had on literature and art. Included in the programme are a re-enactment of the battle of Culloden and a debating championship —illustrating the diverse ways you can win an argument.

‘The first aim for the weekend is that people who come along have a bit of fun,’ says Fergusson. ‘The second is that they learn something about this fascinating time in our history - and there’s something rather nice about learning about your past in a building where your future is discussed. And the third aim is that we have another satisfied group of people who will act as ambassadors and encourage others to visit the Parliament. If we can achieve that, it will have been a very successful event.’

The Scottish Parliament, Fri 26-Mon 29 Nov

Rebels With A Cause: The Jacobites and the Global Imagination

A fascinating display of materials and historical artefacts from the University of Aberdeen's Jacobite collection intended to foreground the international aspect of the movement's legacy and the influence that Jacobites forced into exile after Culloden came to have in France, Italy, America and India. The exhibition…

St Andrew's Night Debate: Who Were the Winners and Losers of the Jacobite Cause?

Award-winning 'Scotsman' journalist Joan McAlpine leads a debate with scholars Alison Lumsden, Cairns Craig, Andrew Mackillop and John Morrison.

St Andrew's Family Weekend Events

A programme of Jacobite-themed family events, including a history trail, code-breaking fun, storytelling and arts activities.

Jacobite Storytelling Sessions

Come down to the Scottish Parliament for exciting tales of heroes and heroines, bloody battles, spies, soldiers and kings. Gaelic-language sessions run on Fri 26 Nov at 2pm and Sun 28 Nov at 3pm.

Highland Warfare Comes to Holyrood

Come along and meet the soldiers as they prepare to battle at Culloden. Try on their armour and hear their stories to discover what it was really like to be a Jacobite rebel.

Egg Decorating Workshop

One of the central treasures of the Jacobite exhibition is an ostrich egg engraved with secret codes and mysterious writings. Come along and join the Parliament's chef to create your own (and considerably more tasty) chocolate version of the encoded egg to take home.

Free Mercat Tours

As part of the Jacobite exhibition at the Scottish Parliament, the pre-eminent Edinburgh guiding company is offering free tours of the Royal Mile as seen through the eyes of a Jacobite rebel. Tours leave from the Mercat Cross and proceed down to the parliament.

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