Photo By Peter Watts
Edinburgh Castle - Great Hall

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Edinburgh Castle - Great Hall - PHOTOGRAPHER COMMENT

Panorama inside the Great Hall at Edinburgh Castle. The picture shows part of the hammerbeam roof and the swords and other weapons that adorn the walls.

Edinburgh Castle - Great Hall - FURTHER INFORMATION

Edinburgh Castle - Great Hall - Edinburgh visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Edinburgh Castle - Great Hall' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Lothian.

The Great Hall stands on the southern edge of Crown Square in Edinburgh Castle. It was commissioned by King James IV and completed in 1511. It was to be the main hall for state assembly at the castle. King James IV had little time to enjoy the hall as he was killed at the Battle of Flodden in 1513 fighting Henry VII of England. Today it is one of only two halls in Scotland that still has it's original hammerbeam roof. The roof is supported by carved stone corbels, which are the oldest Renaissance corbels in the UK.

In 1633 it held a banquet in honour of Charles I the night before his coronation as the King of Scotland. The Parliament of Scotland met in the Great Hall for a time before moving to the Parliament Hall next to St. Giles' Cathedral in 1639.

In 1650 Oliver Cromwell invaded Scotland, captured Edinburgh and took over the castle. Determined to wipe out traces of Royalty he turned the Great Hall into a barracks. In 1737 the hall was divided into 3 stories and home to 312 soldiers. The soldiers moved to the New Barracks in the 1790's and the Hall then served as a hospital until 1887. It was then restored by Hippolyte Blanc during the reign of Queen Victoria and the decorations within it date from this time.

Today the Great Hall is still used for some ceremonial occasions and as the location for BBC Scotland's 'Hogmanay Live' programme broadcast during Hogmanay each year. The hall is open to the public at other times.


Edinburgh Castle


Bus: 24 to Lawnmarket.
Walk: Edinburgh Castle is at the western end of the Royal Mile, which leads down east to the Palace of Holyroodhouse and the Scottish Parliament. This is about 15 minutes walk from Waverley Station and the Tourist Information Centre.

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