Trialling of a new Digital Heritage Trail.

The Inverness Townscape Heritage (TH) Project has been working in partnership with High Life Highland to create a digital heritage trail to preserve the history of work, shopping and leisure on Academy Street.

The digital heritage trail is a key outcome for the Inverness Townscape Heritage Project and has been delivered in partnership with High Life Highland and AOC Archaeology Ltd.  Over the last two and half years, 30 heritage engagement events have been held and members of the community were invited to share their stories.  Over 600 people came forward from groups such as A. I. Welders Social Group, the Second Inverness Girls Brigade and the congregation and community of the East Church.  Their generous input has brought to light a wealth of high quality content for the website, as well as opening up the rich variety of materials available in the city’s museum, library and archive collections.

The new digital heritage trail was tested by stakeholders at Inverness Museum and Art Gallery today (Tuesday 25 September) and their feedback will help the developers (AOC Archaeology Ltd) refine and shape the website before it is launched on 9 October.  The website has been designed to continually evolve as more content is generated.

A range of the results from the public engagement are currently on display at Inverness Museum and Art Gallery (IMAG), including stunning detailed line drawings of Academy Street in 1920 by Gordon Lynn. 

Chairman of the Townscape Heritage Partnership, Councillor Richard Laird said: “I am delighted to try out the website today and to see how it showcases the rich variety of material that members of the public have so generously brought forward to save for generations of residents and visitors to our city.”

Ian Murray, Chief Executive of High Life Highland added “It has been fascinating to hear the stories of Academy Street as told by over 600 individuals who have generously contributed to the Inverness Townscape Heritage Project. 

“I am delighted that High Life Highland has been able to capture these stories though engagement with members of the community and it is a pleasure to see them shared on the website today for the Stakeholder Group’s feedback prior to the launch of the site."

A Townscape Heritage project is a grant-giving scheme that helps communities to regenerate Conservation Areas displaying particular social or economic need.

Focusing on Academy Street, the Townscape Heritage project is a collaborating of funding partners including The National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), Inverness City Heritage Trust (ICHT,  Historic Environment Scotland (HES) and is co-ordinated and led by The Highland Council, contributing to a project fund, from which grants are given to local property owners, businesses and organisations to allow them to carry out high-quality repairs and historic reinstatement to properties and spaces within the defined TH area.

The aim of the Inverness TH project is to improve the quality of life for those who live, work or visit Academy Street by:

  • Preserving and enhancing the character and appearance of the street
  • Repairing and restoring authentic details and materials
  • Bringing historic buildings back into appropriate, sustainable and economic use
  • Improving public realm to make Academy Street a welcoming and attractive environment
  • Increasing training opportunities in heritage skills and wider community engagement.

Full details of the project can be viewed via


25 Sep 2018