Great Scott! Campaign celebrates Edinburgh author

From today Edinburgh’s Waverley Station - the only railway station in the world named after a novel - will be awash with the wit and wisdom of the writer of that book, Sir Walter Scott.

Scott’s Waverley, regarded as the world’s first historical novel, celebrates its 200th birthday this year and in a collaboration between Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust and Network Rail, quotes from Scott’s books and the thoughts of the man himself will be written across the floors, windows and walkways of the station bringing Scott’s words alive for a new audience.

The campaign, developed by Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust, aims not only to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the publication of Waverley, but also to mark the 10th anniversary of Edinburgh's designation as the world's first UNESCO City of Literature.

Commenting on the campaign, Councillor Richard Lewis, Culture and Sport Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: "As the world’s first UNESCO City of Literature, Scotland’s Capital city is a genuine hub for all things to do with literature. This celebration to mark 10 years of the designation and one of the city’s best-known writers can only go to reinforce that status further.

“Waverley station sits just a stone’s throw from the Scott Monument, which is the world’s largest monument dedicated to a writer. Just a few streets away in the New Town is Edinburgh’s Assembly Rooms which is where, in 1827, Scott decided to reveal his identity as the ‘The Great Unknown’ author of the Waverley Novels.

“Homages to Sir Walter can be found throughout Edinburgh. In the Old Town you can learn about his life and works at the city’s Writers Museum, where visitors can see the printing press on which the Waverley Novels were produced, and a first edition of the Waverley novel. Just along the Royal Mile you will also find the Heart of Midlothian set in stone, so called after Scott’s novel of the same name.

“Arriving into Edinburgh’s Waverley Station is a special welcome for any visitor, with its enviable location right in the heart of the city, and I’m sure the installation of Scott’s quotes will provide a great starting point for exploring Scott’s legacy in the city, and will even serve to cheer up the weariest of commuters as they travel to and from the Capital.”

On 29 October at the Writers Museum, you can even hear stories being read that have been inspired by Sir Walter Scott as part of the Storytelling Festival. 

Find out more about Waverley Station marking Scott’s novel’s bicentenary.

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