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Last Updated: Monday, 27 September, 2004, 15:11 GMT 16:11 UK
Heritage body handed maritime HQ
Interior of Trinity House - Copyright Historic Scotland single use for BBC News Online
Trinity House houses a collection of maritime memorabilia
Historic Scotland has taken control of Trinity House in Edinburgh, a building steeped in the city's seafaring past.

The 19th Century building in Leith houses a collection of maritime memorabilia and is closely connected to the area's rich maritime history.

It was home to the Incorporation of Masters and Mariners of Leith and was gifted to the heritage body by the Trinity House of Leith Museum Trust.

Tourism minister Frank McAveety accept the house on Monday.

The Georgian property was handed over by the Master of Trinity House, Captain Alexander Hamilton, one of the remaining members of the Incorporation.

'Hidden gem'

The body was founded about 1380 to provide relief for poor, infirm and aged seafarers and their families.

Mr McAveety said: "This property and its unique collection is one of Leith's hidden gems.

"Although Leith's maritime significance is much diminished in the 21st Century, the stories connected with Trinity House remind us all of the wealth the sea brought to Leith and, in turn, Edinburgh.

"The few remaining masters have diligently cared for the property and its contents.

Exterior of Trinity House - Copyright Historic Scotland single use for BBC News Online
Trinity House was built in the 19th Century

"We are delighted to accept the gift of Trinity House and its collection of artefacts which tell such a vivid story of Leith's maritime heritage."

The two-storey building was completed by 1818 and contains a collection of nautical models, paintings, drawings, documents and artefacts relating to the local area.

Historic Scotland has appointed staff at the house who conduct guided tours for groups of up to 15 people.


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