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In Search of Sir Walter Scott - Coming to BBC Scotland 10th August

To mark the 250th anniversary of the birth of Sir Walter Scott, author Damian Barr goes in search of the legacy and lasting influence of one of Scotland’s great historical figures, novelists and poets.


Damian Barr with a bust of Scott


In Search of Sir Walter Scott will air on BBC Scotland at 10pm, Wednesday 10th August.

We see Damian's travels range from the huge Scott monument on Prince’s Street Edinburgh, to Smailholm Tower in the Borders, which inspired Scott as a child, to Loch Katrine - the setting for his most famous poem The Lady Of The Lake - and to Doune Castle, which featured in his debut novel Waverley, and which continues to inspire historical novelists to this day.

Damian, well-known to BBC Scotland audiences as the host of The Big Scottish Book Club, goes on a personal journey to discover the truth about the man, his world and his work. Along the way he meets with world experts, including Professor Alison Lumsden of Aberdeen University, novelist James Robertson, author of Scott-land Stuart Kelly, and Abbotsford curator Kirsty Archer-Thompson.

In Search Of Sir Walter Scott, which is a production by Factory Films for BBC Scotland, reveals the long-lasting influence of Scott and his writing, his political campaigning and his role in creating a version of Scotland we are still living with today.

Damian says: “Walter Scott remains one of the world’s most famous writers… the pioneer of a new literary genre, historical fiction, he changed the way the world views Scotland and how we Scots see ourselves.

“His legacy is all around us but he is almost invisible now. He outsold his contemporaries Lord Byron and Jane Austen, but these days Scott’s works are barely lifted off the shelves. Like a lot of people, I’ve got an idea about Scott, but is it accurate? So that’s why 250 years after his birth I’m going in search of Sir Walter Scott.”


Tune in at 10pm, Wednesday 10th August 2021, BBC Scotland

Also available on BBC iPlayer

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