Aberdeen’s highly-anticipated Hall of Heroes will come with a twist reminiscent of the Big Brother house, with local legends being evicted based on their popularity.
The finishing touches are now being added to Provost Skene House ahead of its relaunch as a museum following a £3.8 million restoration.
An announcement on when it will open is expected in the coming weeks, with bosses keeping a close eye on Covid infection rates before making any decisions.
Honouring those who made their mark
The 16th century home in Guestrow is being transformed into the home of a Hall Of Heroes celebrating the achievements of people who have made lasting contributions to the city and the wider north-east.
There will be 10 special exhibits showcasing the prestigious group.
The 10 prime displays were decided by a public vote a few years ago, with scores of people deciding who most deserved the honour.
But it has now emerged that, as a way to ensure the attraction remains fresh, one new local luminary will be added to the space every 12 to 18 months.
And to facilitate their arrival, the “hero” who received the least votes in the 2017 poll will be shown the door.
The 10 displays in the Hall of Heroes come under different categories, and will be dedicated to –
Stars of Stage and Screen:
Scotland the What? (George Donald; Buff Hardie; Steve Robertson), Annie Inglis
Annie Lennox, Dame Evelyn Glennie
Denis Law, Sir Alex Ferguson
Stuart MacBride, Bishop William Elphinstone
Dugald Baird, May Baird
The Hall of Heroes will be one single display room inside Provost Skene’s House, with scores of others famous figures being celebrated elsewhere in the building.
The decision is yours
A council spokesman explained how the rotating system will work once the venue opens.
He said: “One person will ‘leave’ the Hall of heroes and one person will be added every 12-18 months.
“The voting for this will be captured throughout the year on the top floor of the building, and will be based on a short list pre-selected by public vote.
“As each person in the ‘Hall of Heroes’ drops off, we will only add them back on to the short list after a gap of one cycle.”
Overall there will be 10 people introduced in the Hall of Heroes, 98 people are featured in the main displays and more than 40 individuals receive “honourable mentions” elsewhere in the building.
Council officials are currently pricing up plans for mounting a bronze statue of Aberdeen-raised Denis Law, Scotland’s only Ballon d’Or winning footballer, near the centuries-old home.
Top 1o decided years ago
Their projections will be mapped onto busts, creating a “dynamic 21st century presentation”.
The historic house is being renovated as part of Aberdeen City Council’s city centre masterplan.
Speaking when the results were announced, Aberdeen City Council co-leader 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.”
The selection criteria for Provost Skene’s House allowed for those who were born, lived, or worked in Aberdeen or the north-east.
Names were drawn up with the guidance of a steering group, which included representation from the tourism, cultural, academic and business sectors.