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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Burns Museum Opens

7th December 2010

The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum officially opened its doors to visitors on Wednesday 1 December 2010. The Museum, which is located at Alloway, near Ayr, incorporates the original cottage where world famous Scots language poet Robert Burns was born in 1759. The Museum, which is owned by the National Trust for Scotland, has been designed to celebrate the life and work of the poet in a variety of ways and, unusually for a museum, has used the Scots language as one of its main mediums. Traditionally in Scotland, public centres dealing with language have talked about Scots in English, or, indeed, other European languages, but the Burns Museum is the first public centre to introduce the visitor to a cultural experience through the Scots language itself. Planners decided at an early stage that Scots would be used on information boards and in audio recordings as much as possible, and writer James Robertson had the task of tailoring the language for visitors who would be less familiar with it than native Scots. Scots texts appear, for example, with certain words explained below in English, and the Museum also provides the visitor with an interactive experience in the language.