Edinburgh Castle + Glasgow Cathedral

If you have ever wondered why bedrooms in castles are not necessarily finished I’m here to tell you it is because when royalty traveled they would take every piece of furniture with them, even the tapestries! The Edinburgh Castle is located on an old volcanic rock towering over the city, as you can see from the photo above. While inside the castle it feels as if you have stepped into a village way back when, with traditionally dressed impersonators walking about.

We first went to the great hall in the castle for some Christmas carols, and they echoed throughout the square in Jewel Clock Towerthe castle. Scotland’s crowned jewels are kept at Edinburgh castle and were once buried after a Treaty of Union between Scotland and England. They were found 111 years later! It’s a ‘proud to be Canadian’ moment when reading the story, and how the plans of where the Honours of Scotland (another name for the crowned jewels) had been hidden. The plans were only shared with four people and one of them was the Governor General of Canada. They are now located in the clock tower, pictured right. The oldest building in the castle is Saint Margaret’s Chapel from the 12th century. It’s amazing how small the doors are considering their dresses were so big. Also in the castle is a Prisoners of War exhibit, Scottish National War Memorial (where one of my relative’s name is displayed) and National War and Regiment museums.

Glasgow CathedralOver in Glasgow, the Glasgow Cathedral is the only medieval church in Scotland to have survived. The building in the photo to the left was built in 1197, has been worshiping God for more than 800 years and is still an active church. The building has never been unroofed, they knew how to build to last! The cathedral is in front of the Glasgow Necropolis, a 37 acre cemetery garden from Victorian times.

scotland street school museum

Scotland Street School Museum + Peter Rabbit

The Scotland Street Public School was designed by Glasgow’s famous architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh (The Willow Tea Rooms and The Hill House). The school is now a museum with temporary exhibits and back to school classes where students experience the Scottish schooldays of Victorian times or the classrooms of WWII. The school was open from 1903 – 1979, teaching students from 5 – 13 years old. The cookery place, cloakrooms, and ceramic-tiled drill hall have all been restored to the original designs from 1906.

The cookery place room stood out the most with desks at the back cookery placeseated for up to 60 students and 18 working stations ‘in the kitchen’. Girls aged 12 – 14 had 10 hours a week of homekeeping classes where they would alternate schools based on what they were taking. For example, Lorne Street School had the classroom for laundry washing and Lambhill Street School for housewifery classes (cleaning and shopping).

Inside the school there is a special Beatrix Potter peter rabbit merchandiseexhibit. This year marks the 110th year since the ‘Tale of Peter Rabbit’ was published. This year a brand new adventure for Peter Rabbit is told by Emma Thompson in, ‘The Further Tale of Peter Rabbit‘. The exhibit features original artwork of Beatrix Potter alongside the new book’s illustrator Eleanor Taylor. There was also a display of merchandise dating back to the early 1900’s including a rare Steiff Peter Rabbit Doll. The stories are brought to life inside the exhibit with illustrations of Peter and his friends along the walls. It is completed by an area with some flower pots where children can sit and hear a reading of one of the many adventures of Peter Rabbit.