This website uses cookies for anonymised analytics and for account authentication. See our privacy and cookies policies for more information.

The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Burns named as charity’s Great Scot

This news post is about 8 years old

​Scotland's Bard is overwhelming victor in Great Scot poll.

Robert Burns has been voted the public’s Great Scot, securing more than twice the votes of his nearest rival, the National Trust for Scotland has revealed.

The conservation charity ran a poll online and at selected properties over the past two months, as part of a campaign to raise funds for the Burns Monument in Alloway which is in need of vital repair.

Burns took the top spot comfortably, with 44% of the vote (see final table below).

Thousands of votes were cast online and in person at the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum, Culloden, Drum Castle, Glencoe Visitor Centre, the Hill House and Pollok House.

National Trust for Scotland's Great Scots
Robert Burns 44%
Charles Rennie Mackintosh 19%
Mary Queen of Scots 16%
Sir Hugh Munro 14%
Flora MacDonald 7%

Chris Waddell, learning manager at the Robert Burns Birthplace in Alloway, said: “We were always confident that Burns was going take the Great Scots title. For many he is Scotland’s soul. Votes for him came from all over the world, showing that not only is he still weel kent at home, but that he remains one of Scotland’s best global ambassadors too.”

Only at Glencoe Visitor Centre was Burns’ dominance challenged. Here Sir Hugh Munro took the top spot.

The conservation charity selected the five historical ‘heroes’ whose fascinating stories and incredible achievements have had a profound impact on Scotland’s history, architecture and landscape and asked the public to select their ‘Great Scot’. The poll ran from 9 March until 29 April.

Mark Bishop, the trust’s director of customer and cause, said: “It was fantastic to see the passion that the Great Scots poll inspired. The lively debate and participation shows just how inspiring our historical heroes are, and we are proud to play our part in telling their story.”

More than £70,000 has been raised of the remaining £100,000 needed to repair the Burns Monument in Alloway.

The Victorian structure requires conservation work and funds have already come from the NTS USA Foundation, grants and individual donors. To donate, click here.