Inchrye Abbey c.1900, © Courtesy of HES (Inchrye Abbey album)

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! To help you get in the festive mood, we wanted to share some of our best winter images. We hold a large archive illustrating archaeological sites, buildings, industry and maritime heritage across Scotland, and there are all sorts of gems to be found there. This is accessible to the public via our online database, Canmore.

Canmore contains collections from our own survey and recording work, as well as from a wide range of other organisations, communities and individuals who are helping to enhance this national resource. With more than 320,000 records and 1.3 million catalogue entries there is plenty to capture your interest.

Browse our winter gallery to see some examples of the wonderful items we hold in our archives.

Aerial photography

Clear winter skies allow the HES aerial photography team to capture spectacular imagery of Scotland blanketed in snow. From picking out the intricate patterns of the terraced gardens of Drummond Castle in Perthshire, to identifying the earthwork remains of Woden Law hill fort in low oblique light, we love their work.

Religious monuments

HES field surveyors have recorded a great many churches and religious monuments over the past hundred years. This had created a fascinating collection which captures the intricacies of religious architecture and iconography, including beautiful examples of stained glass windows and stone carvings.

Festive images

Our collections also contain a number of rare or unusual images relating to the holiday season. These range from a Christmas tree balanced in the building site of Hyde Park Cavalry Barracks, to a selection of Christmas cards drawn by renowned architects and archaeologists. You can also get a fascinating glimpse of Scottish winters past with Victorian and early twentieth century imagery from our private photograph album collections.

There’s More!

Enjoyed looking through our winter gallery?

You can browse our image highlights galleries  or choose from thousands of digital images covering the whole of Scotland on Canmore.




About Author


Laura Masterton

Laura worked in the public services team answering questions on our archives and supplying images for everything from family history research to biscuit tins. She has now left HES.