‘Scandalous Edinburgh’ walking tour reveals banks’ dirty energy secrets

‘Scandalous Edinburgh’ walking tour reveals banks’ dirty energy secrets

Date: 19 September 2013

A guided walking tour around Edinburgh’s financial districts this autumn (26 September-26 October) will reveal the hidden story of UK banks, pension funds and hedge funds fuelling climate change by investing in fossil fuel companies and dirty energy projects around the world. The World Development Movement has created the tours to bring to life its new ‘Carbon Capital’ campaign which exposes the role of the finance sector in bankrolling climate change.

Guests will be taken on an eye-opening, educational tour beginning in the historical financial district around St. Andrew Square, and ending in the modern-day Exchange district. Throughout the tour participants will hear tales of pensions buried in tar sands and cowboy arctic drillers, woven with more inspiring tales of hardy activists throughout history, and modern day banks that are daring to do things differently. 

The tour will be interactive, with ‘carbon bubble-blowing’, a quiz, historical re-enactments and chalk drawing on pavements featuring as part of the two hour trip. 

World Development Movement campaigner Jane Herbstritt said:

“Edinburgh’s financial sector makes up 8% of the Scottish workforce, and manages around £750 billion in assets annually. Clearly such a powerful and influential sector could be making a really positive contribution in our transition towards a green global economy, but instead it continues to invest heavily in fossil fuels. High street banks like RBS and Barclays are financing multi-national companies involved in large-scale coal, oil and gas projects that displace local communities and threaten the global climate. We intend to show people living in Edinburgh that these investments are taking place right under their noses, using their money. We also want to show that there are positive solutions out there, and that people can take action to change things.”


For more information call Jane Herbstritt or Liz Murray on 0131 243 2730 or 07841 919571

Notes for editors

The tours will take place on the following dates:  
Thursday 26 September, 3.30pm
Saturday 5 October, 11am
Wednesday 9 October, 3.30pm
Wednesday 16 October, 3.30pm
Saturday 26 October, 11am 

Tickets cost £5 (£3 concessions).  Tickets can be booked at www.scandalousedinburgh.eventbrite.co.uk or by calling 0131 243 2730

The route of the tours will be:

The tour starts in St Andrews Square taking in Bank of Scotland and Barclays, the site of the Occupy protests, Royal London Group, First State Investment, the Royal Bank of Scotland and the former site of the Scottish Suffrage Societies.  Then the tour will leave St Andrews Square via the west side to George St, turn right onto Hanover St to go to HSBC, then back along Hanover St (towards Princes St) to Triodos Bank.  Then participants will be taken by taxi along George Street, passing Aviva, and on to Festival Square to access the Exchange district.  Participants will then walk from Festival Square along Exchange Crescent past Clydesdale Bank, Cairn Energy, Black Rock and Standard Life, finishing at the Green Investment Bank on Morrison Street.

Excerpts of the script used by the tour guides are available on request.

See also WDM’s recent research calculating the carbon footprint of the Royal Bank of Scotland, when its loans to fossil fuel companies around the world are taken into account:

More information on WDM’s Carbon Capital campaign can be found at http://www.wdm.org.uk/carbon-capital