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Scottish Traditional Building Forum | 9th Edinburgh Traditional Building Festival

9th Edinburgh Traditional Building Festival

Edinburgh Traditional Building Festival 2021


Edinburgh Traditional Building Festival programme issued, with the organisers turning their eyes to the future, COP26, and the sustainability of traditional buildings in a dynamic and ever-changing world.


Festival Programme:


Day1 –  23 August 2021 – 11:00

  • Festival Opening Remarks by Alison Johnstone MSP, Presiding Officer


Alison Johnstone MSP with Tyler Lott Johnston at the thermal imaging activity at the Scottish Parliament 2019


Followed by: Virtual Tour/Walk down Royal Mile by BEFS

Stopping at key buildings and highlighting their importance and any sustainability work undertaken previously.


Day 2 -24 August 2021 – 11:00

  • The Building Stones of Edinburgh– Paul Everett for the British Geological Survey

Provide a Virtual Tour of Calton Hill with a live Q&A session


Day 3  – 25 August 2021 – 11:00

  • Traditional Stonemasonry– Andy Bradley SPAB Fellow) will give a presentation with a live Q&A session


Day 3 – 25 August 2021 – 14:00

  • Timber and Sash & Case Windows – Alex from the Federation of Master Builders will give a virtual demonstration with a live Q&A session


Day 4 -26 August 2021 – 11:00

  • Roof Leadwork – Steve McLennan of National Federation of Roofing Contractors will give a virtual demonstrations with a live Q&A session


Day 4 -26 August 2021 – 14:00

  • Roof Slating and Tiling– Graeme Millar of National Federation of Roofing Contractors and current President of IFD will give a presentation with a live Q&A session


Day 5 -27 August 2021 – 11:00

  • The Importance the Placemaking for adaptive reuse – Tyler Lott Johnston of Grand Bequest presents on the opportunities to leverage technology as a tool to elevate and champion the voice of local people within adaptive reuse projects followed by a live Q&A Session


Day 5 -27 August 2021 – 14:00

  • How to maintain your home/building – Scottish Government, City of Edinburgh Council and Under One Roof will give a presentation on the importance of repair and maintenance of traditional homes and best practice in doing so which will be followed by a live Q&A.


To book tickets for this year’s event please follow the link:


The Edinburgh Traditional Building Festival was formed when a member of the Edinburgh Traditional Building Forum attended the Festival of Politics at the Scottish Parliament one year. As he walked up the Royal Mile from the parliament he saw (as we all do) tourists marvelling at, and taking photographs of, Edinburgh built heritage and thought “if they can do a festival of politics then we can do a festival of traditional buildings”.


Tyler Lott Johnston, Convener of the Edinburgh Traditional Building Forum, said “I am delighted to be delivering our ninth annual Edinburgh Traditional Building Festival this year. After 2020’s record-setting event, we are so thankful to be able to continue to deliver our goals of highlighting and advocating for the many traditional buildings throughout our great city and beyond. I want to express my personal thanks to all of the presenters who have donated their time, expertise, and resources to once again bring together an exciting event in what has undoubtedly been a challenging year for us all. Thanks to the digital engagement brought forth over the past year and a half, our message and our teachings have more significant, far-reaching opportunities than ever before. The weight of that responsibility is not lost on us and while we hope to resume in-person events next year, we will continue to embrace a hybrid model to ensure that our audiences across the world can tune in and experience the incredible opportunities that our industry has to offer.”


This was raised at a meeting of the Edinburgh Traditional Building Forum and the next year, we were part of the official Festival Fringe delivering a number of demonstrations and talks to “Celebrate Edinburgh’s Traditional Buildings”, which became our strapline.


The event grew over the years and, due to limited capacity, each of the shows were regularly sold out well before the start of the Festival Fringe.


Like the rest of the world, we had neither planned for a global pandemic nor what we would do in such an instance; While it was a steep learning curve last year, we were overwhelmed by the support and encouragement received for our efforts across the sector.


Following the success of last year’s event and the potential wide-spread health implications of hosting an in-person event at the present time, the Festival working group have once again wholeheartedly embraced technology. Without the benefit of the usual in-person planning meetings, the group divided tasks equally and came together to create .


We definitely missed the benefit of live skills demonstrations last year, so are pleased to be able to have incorporated virtual tours and demonstrations in this year’s event for a more dynamic experience for all.



John McKinney

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