This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Search ITCM

Pupils given the keys to Stirling Castle

The winners of a competition open to all Scottish secondary schools were recently welcomed to Stirling Castle and given the ‘Keys to the Castle’ to mark the end to this year’s successful Scottish Tourism Careers Festival, organised by the charity Springboard.

The 19 pupils from Bridge of Don Academy, Aberdeen, triumphed over their competitors to secure a specially commissioned trophy and were treated to a VIP tour of the refurbished James V Palace apartments where they met  historical characters from the renaissance court.  

Organised in partnership with Historic Scotland, the competition split pupils into teams and tested their research skills through a series of multiple choice questions. Teams also had to capture in no more than 100 words why historic and cultural sites are so important to Scotland’s tourism sector today.  

Castle staff were on hand to explain the range of careers associated with running one of Scotland’s most iconic monuments, as well as highlight the requisite skills required to look after its historical treasures.   

The prize also involves the delivery of five master-classes by Historic Scotland to the school over the course of the next year, with pupils able to choose from a menu of topics, including sales and marketing, product development, job application and interviewing skills, tour guiding and retailing. The master-classes are geared to illustrate to students the range of career opportunities available within this dynamic sector.  

Elise MacDonald, Operations Manager with Springboard Scotland, said: “The presentation of the award for the Keys to the Castle initiative is a fitting end to this year’s Scottish Tourism Careers Festival, which aims to inspire and attract fresh, young talent into the business.  

“The festival offers a unique platform, with individual employers and experts playing their part in mentoring and advising young people. The competition is a further example of this, as pupils had the chance to find out firsthand the vital role Scotland’s rich heritage plays in attracting visitors and the important contribution this makes to the sector overall.  

Kirsten Wood, Learning Development Officer for Historic Scotland at Stirling Castle said: “This is the second year that we have worked with Springboard on this initiative. It’s a great way to get school children  involved in finding out more about Scotland’s heritage and the hugely important role it plays today within the tourism sector.  

“Historic Scotland runs 78 attractions across Scotland, making us the biggest visitor attraction operator in the country, so we are delighted to work with Springboard to allow young people to have firsthand experience of what it’s like to operate at the heart of Scotland’s tourist industry.”  

The event at Stirling Castle also marked the launch of next year’s competition, where once again hundreds of pupils will have the opportunity to work towards securing the ‘Keys to the Castle’ for their school in 2014.  

For over 21 years, Springboard has been helping young, unemployed and disadvantaged people improve their prospects through a possible career within hospitality and tourism.

Pictured: The specially commissioned trophy was sculpted by Iain Mc Fadden, apprentice stonemason at Historic Scotland.

Submit to DiggSubmit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to StumbleuponSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedIn