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Palace of Holyroodhouse

For visitors to the Palace of Holyroodhouse there will be a new ticketing and welcome area, and visitor facilities and step-free access will be improved.  The display of the Royal Collection at the Palace will be refreshed and there will be a greater focus on telling the stories of the Palace's former residents, including Mary, Queen of Scots and Bonnie Prince Charlie, with a much fuller introduction to the rich history of the Palace and its continuing use today.

An artist's impression of one of the rooms in the new Learning Centre. The ceiling in this room is made from 17th-century painted beams salvaged from Midhope Castle in the 1960s.

An artist's impression of one of the rooms in the new Learning Centre. The ceiling in this room is made from 17th-century painted beams salvaged from Midhope Castle in the 1960s. ©

A Learning Centre for teaching, learning activities and lectures will be created in the Abbey Strand buildings, the oldest part of which dates from around 1490.  Located adjacent to the Palace, these buildings have had many uses, including a weapons store during the reign of James V and a home to debtors inside the Abbey Sanctuary.  In the 18th century, the buildings housed around 25 families and included a brewery, a row of taverns and a brothel known as Lucky Spence's House.

Behind the Learning Centre, a new public garden will be created, inspired by the earliest recorded gardens at the Palace. A physic garden will reimagine the 17th-century garden that was once within the Palace grounds, where students learned about the medicinal properties of plants. Next to this, a flowering meadow will evoke the 15th-century garden cared for by the monks of Holyrood Abbey.

The Forecourt, currently part of a visit to the Palace, will be opened up to the public as part of Future Programme.

Find out more about what there is to see and do at the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

An artist's impression of the new physic garden at the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

An artist's impression of the new physic garden at the Palace of Holyroodhouse. © J & L Gibbons

Find out how the Abbey Strand is being transformed in this short film.