Whalebone arches can be found in many places around Scotland, particularly in areas associated with the whaling industry. Edinburgh’s Arch is one of last relics of the International Exhibition of Science and Art which took place in the Meadows in 1886. The jaw bones of a whale formed part of the stand of the Shetland and Fair Isle Knitters, and after the exhibition they were gifted to the city.


The Jawbone Arch  is an iconic structure within the Meadows landscape but is in need of restorationfollowing years of being exposed to the Edinburgh elements. I think it is important to preserve these cultural heritage sites, so I am asking people to consider donating to the campaign to preserve and restore the Arch.


The whalebones need to be taken for detailed examination, before specialist conservation work can take place. The appeal organisers are looking for donations to complete the project, with the support of Edinburgh World Heritage and the City of Edinburgh Council.


Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage, said: “Conservation work is essential if we want the Jawbone Arch to survive and be enjoyed by future generations. Several places around the world have whale-bone archways, but Edinburgh’s was a gift from the knitters of Shetland and Fair Isle, and is a rare example with formed of two pairs together. The response to the fundraising appeal has been very encouraging, but we need even greater generosity from the people and companies of Edinburgh to ensure the Jawbone Arch’s future.”

Donations can be made to the Jawbone Appeal via:

Online via:

By writing:
Jawbone Appeal
Edinburgh World Heritage
5 Bakehouse Close
146 Canongate

T: 0131 220 7720

Cheques should be payable to Edinburgh World Heritage Trust

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Ian Murray for Edinburgh South