Advice and Support

Talking About Heritage

Explore, share and celebrate your heritage with our Talking About Heritage guides

People walking in Holyrood Park with a Ranger

Heritage is an exciting, important and sometimes challenging subject. It can make us feel connected. It can also make us feel uncomfortable. We need to understand our heritage to help us shape our society today and in the future.

Let’s start talking about heritage.

Why talk about heritage?

The best person to explain what Scotland’s heritage means to you is you.

Your heritage could be the places you care about - a music venue, local park, or famous ruin. It could also be the stories you love or the language you speak.

Speaking up can help you to protect your heritage. Or to share it with the world. These Talking About Heritage guides can get the conversation going. They can also help you get your voice heard.

How do the guides work? 

You can open all the guides in order, or jump straight to the one that suits you. You can also download the guidance in full

A photographer shows two people a picture he has taken

Investigate heritage

Find out more about your heritage. Investigate the buildings and landscapes around you. Dig deeper into old photos and documents. Think about the stories, languages and traditions that matter to you.

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A trainee surveying sections of 18th century military road heritage in Highland Perthshire, including the Wade Bridge in Aberfeldy, Perthshire

Understand heritage

What makes an object, building or tradition worth looking after? You can begin by thinking about the particular values that people place on it.

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HES staff visiting the archive at the library in John Sinclair House for a tour

Celebrate heritage

When more people learn about your heritage, they can help you to celebrate and protect it. Sharing knowledge adds to everyone’s understanding of our past.

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Students at the Engine Shed using wood to create constructions

Care for heritage

We can all help to look after heritage. Find out what individuals, groups and public bodies can do, and how you can get involved.

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Talking About Heritage started with a conversation we had with the people of Scotland. We asked them, ‘What’s Your Heritage?

People told us that heritage matters for all sorts of reasons. It reflects different viewpoints across cultures and generations. It inspires a range of emotions, positive and negative. It can help to us to feel connected to a community, to a place or to a shared past.

People told us they want to be able to explore their heritage, to understand it, to celebrate it, and to make sure it’s recognised.

If that’s what you want to do, Talking About Heritage can help.