Battle of Bannockburn re-enactment to go ahead

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The National Trust for Scotland (NTS) has confirmed that the re-enactment of the Battle of Bannockburn will go ahead in the summer of 2014, on 24 April 2013.

David McAllister, the project director for the Battle of Bannockburn Project with NTS, told the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee the re-enactment will be a three day event to create a long weekend of activity from 28 to 30 June 2014.

MSPs were taking evidence on the Battle of Bannockburn project which is a joint initiative between the NTS and Historic Scotland which aims to transform the site in time for the 700th anniversary.

The re-enactment is an integral element of the NTS programme of activity designed to mark the launch of the new £9.1m Battle of Bannockburn experience centre, as well as to commemorate the anniversary of the battle.

Caroline Packman the director of Homecoming Scotland said 2014 would be a "very exciting year for Scottish tourism", adding the Bannockburn event would be a key moment in the year long programme.

Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs convener Malcolm MacGregor told the committee the Bannockburn re-enactment would not attract the same number of clan members as the clan gathering in Edinburgh in 2009, due to a "lack of lead-in time" for the event.

However Mr MacGregor said what was happening at Bannockburn was "superb" and the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs would do its best to promote the event.

Stirling Council leader Johanna Boyd told the committee the planned clan gathering had been cancelled after the Scottish government and Stirling Council agreed to do so.

Ms Boyd said the event had been forecast to make a deficit of £250,000 and the addition of an extra day to the Bannockburn event instead was seen as less of a risk.

Peter Selman, the project sponsor for the Battle of Bannockburn Project with NTS said "this is Stirling's time" and said excitement around the event had already started to pre-sell it.

In June 1314, King Edward II brought the largest English army ever to invade Scotland.

Scottish king Robert the Bruce led his smaller force to a decisive victory at Bannockburn, near Stirling, and Edward narrowly escaped capture as he fled to Dunbar and the safety of a ship home.

Energy, Enterprise and Tourism Minister Fergus Ewing then gave evidence on a legislative consent memorandum for the UK Energy Bill .

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