Craftspeople from Historic Environment Scotland (HES) have been showcasing a range of traditional skills in the making of items used in the Service of Thanksgiving and Dedication which took place at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh last week.
The project to create special tables to display the Stone of Destiny and the Honours of Scotland during the ceremony has shone a spotlight on the variety of inhouse specialist skills at HES, including blacksmithing, joinery and traditional painting.
The unveiling of the crafted objects comes ahead of World Youth Skills Day on 15 July, the international celebration of technical and vocational education and training which highlights the importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship. HES offers a range of opportunities to learn traditional skills and building conservation on-the-job while earning a wage through its Apprenticeships, Traineeships and Craft Fellowships programmes.
The plinth designed to display the Stone of Destiny during the service at St Giles’ was handcrafted using Scottish Oak grown in Fife by HES Joiner Adrian Ferguson at St Ann’s Maltings workshop in Edinburgh.
The inset decorative Lion Rampant roundels – inspired by the Lion in the panel above the drawbridge at the entrance to Edinburgh Castle – were cast by HES Blacksmith Stacey Hibberd.
Initially hand-modelled in clay by Colin Muir, Senior Stone Conservator at HES, the Lion was then digitally scanned to produce a 3D digital model, which in turn was used to create a full-size 3D printed pattern. A mould was then created using the 3D print. The roundel was then cast in molten pewter with a 23.5-carat gold gilded finish hand-applied by HES Painter Kerry Stewart.
The table used to display the Honours of Scotland and the temporary top for the Holy Table, which was used to cover broadcasting equipment at the ceremony, were crafted by Adrian Ferguson, while the marbled paint for the top of the Holy Table was applied by HES Painter Liam Givan.
For more information about learning traditional skills at HES, visit: https://www.historicenvironment.scot/