The line-up for a Hall of Heroes at a new Aberdeen visitor attraction was announced today after nearly 2,000 people took part in a public poll.

Provost Skene’s House is being redeveloped as part of the City Centre Masterplan and will tell the story of local people who helped transform the wider world.

The ground floor will feature the top two candidates chosen from five categories during a three-week poll, which 1,987 people took part in.

The heroes selected were:

Stars of Stage and Screen:

Scotland the What? (George Donald; Buff Hardie and Steve Robertson)

The comedy trio – William ‘Buff’ Hardie, Stephen Robertson and George Donald – entertained sell-out audiences across the world for three decades.

Annie Inglis

Annie Inglis was the city’s “first lady of drama”. She founded the Aberdeen Arts Centre and was awarded an MBE in 2007 for her services to drama.

Musical Maestros:

Annie Lennox

World-renowned singer, songwriter and political activist, Lennox achieved major international success alongside fellow musician Dave Stewart as the Eurythmics in the 1980s.

Dame Evelyn Glennie

Percussionist Evelyn Glennie – who has been profoundly deaf since she was 12 – has performed worldwide with the greatest conductors, orchestras and artists.

Sporting Champions:

Denis Law

Aberdeen-born Denis Law is a former Scottish footballer. He played for Scotland 55 times and jointly holds the Scottish international record goal tally with Kenny Dalglish.

Sir Alex Ferguson

Regarded as one of the most successful managers in the history of football, he was responsible for leading the Dons through their golden era during the 1980s.

Wizard Wordsmiths:

Stuart MacBride

Internationally successful crime thriller writer, Stuart MacBride is best known for his Logan McRae and Ash Henderson detective novels set in the Granite City.

Bishop William Elphinstone

Bishop William Elphinstone was the founding father of King’s College and a key influence in the introduction of the first printing press to Scotland.

Scientific Saviours:

Dugald Baird

Between 1937 and 1965 Sir Dugald Baird transformed Aberdeen’s obstetric service making it a national centre of research and practice, and achieving the best birth outcomes in the UK.

May Baird

May Baird graduated in Medicine in 1924 and later moved to Aberdeen. She was instrumental in establishing the first free family planning clinic in Aberdeen.


All of the 50 hero candidates will feature in Provost Skene’s House. The vote was for an additional presence near the entrance where projections will be mapped onto busts, creating a dynamic
21st-century presentation.

In all, the stories of more than 100 people will be celebrated in the historic Guestrow building, which is being renovated through the £1.5 million Masterplan project.

Aberdeen City Council leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: “The public’s contribution has been tremendously valuable and will help ensure the attraction has widespread appeal.

“The stories and achievements of our heroes – indeed all the candidates – clearly resonated with residents.

“This Masterplan project promises to deliver a fantastic new attraction, celebrating familiar successes but also offering a journey of discovery for visitors wherever they are from.”

Deputy leader Councillor Marie Boulton said: “What makes our city region great is the vision and drive of our people, and that legacy continues.

“We will be conserving one of Aberdeen’s favourite historic buildings while giving it new purpose in showcasing our global influence.

“The poll captured the public’s imagination and the level of response reflects the enthusiasm for the building’s new role.

As part of the City Centre Masterplan, Provost Skene’s House in Aberdeen is to become a new visitor attraction celebrating local people who transformed the world.

The historic building is being renovated and redeveloped and will showcase the story of entrepreneurs, inventors, scientists, artists and sportspeople whose influence extended far beyond Aberdeen and the North-east.

The new attraction will include a “Hall of Heroes” – and you are being asked to vote for who should be given an extra presence there. So please read about the candidates and make your choices!

Why We Are Consulting

The Hall of Heroes will be located on the ground floor and serve as a welcome to the new Provost Skene’s House attraction.

The City Centre Masterplan was shaped by the people and belongs to the city in the widest sense. By continuing to work together we aim to get the best result when delivering individual projects.

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