Adopt-a-Monument

Scotland's Cultural Heritage is exceptionally rich and diverse - from prehistoric standing stones, to medieval townships; graveyards and memorials to post medieval industrial buildings and to WW2 defence features. The best known of these sites are protected and cared for by organisations such as Historic Scotland, National Trust for Scotland, Forestry Commission Scotland, Local Authority’s and land owners, but this stewardship only extend to a small percentage of Scotland’s Cultural Heritage. Many other sites need urgent care and attention to ensure that they survive for future generations to enjoy and ‘Adopting’ such monuments is a great way to start. 

Monuments of any age from anywhere in Scotland can be proposed (no matter how unusual), with the focus on helping volunteers to improve sites which they are passionate about. Taking part in the scheme will equip volunteers with new skills in archaeological fieldwork and conservation, which can be used again and again to promote the heritage of their local area. It's also a great way to keep active, develop new skills, meet new people and achieve real results.

The idea for the Adopt-a-Monument Scheme was first developed in the 1990s. Between 1991 and 1998, the Council for Scottish Archaeology (CSA) ran Adopt-a-Monument in response to the number of archaeological societies who wanted to look after and take responsibility for cultural heritage sites in their area.  A second phase (2006-2009) was funded by Historic Scotland, and was intended as pilot scheme to assess the popularity of the scheme. Due to the overwhelming response to the pilot project, Adopt-a-Monument is now back!

The current AaM Scheme builds on this past experience and meet the demands from community groups who wish to engage with their local heritage. With the help of our funders, we are here to help for the next five years.

Adopt-a-Monument is here to help you get involved with your local heritage. While we do have limited spaces on the scheme, we want to hear from anyone who would like play a leading role in conserving a monument that they feel passionate about.

Still interested in being part of the Adopt-a-Monument Scheme? Then get in touch with the Adopt-a-Monument Team either by phone (0300 012 9878) or by email (adopt@archaeologyscotland.org.uk). One of the first things we will ask you to do is to fill in our Register of Interest form (download below)  – this gives you a bit more information about the Scheme and allows us to get an idea about what you want to do. Have a look at our case study project which details an Adopt-a-Monument project, from start to finish. Not every project brought to us is suitable for the Adopt-a-Monument Scheme, but we will still try to direct you to an organisation that may be able to help you.

Register of Interest form (PDF)

Register of Interest form (Word document)

All of our publications are listed below in our publication section, but for quick and easy access to our 'Adopt-a-Monument project toolkit' click on the link below. 

Adopt-a-Monument project toolkit

Publications

This document provides an introduction to the Adopt-a-Monument toolkit and the scheme itself.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on how to archive and publish the records of your Adopt-a-Monument project.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives an introduction to funding your project.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on safety, risk assessment and insurance for your project

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives an introduction to widening audiences for your monument - from school events to open days.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on assessing the environmental impact of your project.

This resource is the full document of the Adopt-a-Monument toolkit.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on the different ways you can tell the story of your site.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on how to research the background history of your monument.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit provides a case study of a completed Adopt-a-Monument project.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on the different factors involved with conserving your monument.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on how to get consent for your project - from landowner to statutory body.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives guidance on how to engage young audiences as part of your Adopt-a-Monument project.

This chapter of the AaM toolkit gives an introduction to recording your monument.

A short guide to creating an Archaeology Treasure Hunt - activity for an public event.

Highland Leader, Scottish Government, EU
Historic Scotland
Argyll and the Islands, Scottish Government, European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development
Adopt-a-Monument

AAM Groups

Minding Merkinch aims to inspire people to investigate...

Digging the Scene was a collaborative local history...

Dunollie Castle occupies the summit of a rocky...

Surveying in progress at Kildavie

Cill Da Bhide is an 18th/19th century settlement at...

Project contact

Adopt a Monument
All AAM staff
adopt@archaeologyscotland.org.uk
Adopt-a-Monument Project Manager
Phil Richardson
p.richardson@archaeologyscotland.org.uk
Adopt-a-Monument Project Manager
Cara Jones
c.jones@archaeologyscotland.org.uk

FAQs

How long does an adoption last?
Will adopting a monument cost our group any money?
Do we need archaeological skills to take part?
What if we have to drop out of the project?
We want to take part but which monument should we choose?
When is a monument unsuitable for the scheme?