When Watty Met Reekie

  • Sir Walter Scott, we presume

    Sir Walter Scott, we presume

  • James Robertson conducts our fantasy interview (image courtesy of Edinburgh International Book Festival).

    James Robertson conducts our fantasy interview (image courtesy of Edinburgh International Book Festival).

  • See? It is him!

    See? It is him!

  • Sir Walter and James Robertson

    Sir Walter and James Robertson

There was a very special guest at Edinburgh International Book Festival yesterday. You might have heard of him. Sir Walter Scott?

Our annual ‘Reading the City’ event – sold out once more! –  with James Robertson took a whirlwind tour of the city from pavement to page before welcoming to the stage one of her most famous literary sons. Sir Walter was quizzed closely by James on subjects ranging from his novel Waverley, published 200 years ago this year, to his views on the Scott Monument and having a station named after his work. He seemed to enjoy the experience and wasn’t at all fazed by new technology or the traffic around Charlotte Square. Rumour has it he even kept his name badge as a memento of the occasion!

We were lucky enough to secure an exclusive interview with Sir Walter, which our friends at WriterStories TV filmed for posterity:

Sir Walter’s appearance at the Book Festival was courtesy of Artemis Scotland, who provide top-notch historical re-enactors for visitor attractions like the National Museums of Scotland, and the team behind the Palimpsest Project at Edinburgh and St Andrews Universities which aims to build a literary map of Edinburgh based on books set there. And just to keep the whole thing nicely literary, Sir Walter was played by Fergus McCann whose ‘day job’ is with Booksource book distributors in Glasgow. Oh what a tangled web, as someone once said…

All other images courtesy of Artemis Scotland.