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SCHOOL SESSION

Mary, Queen of Scots: power, palace and plots

Children with handling objects
  • Next event: Friday 24 May 2024
    Every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday (Wednesday 23 Aug 2023 - Thursday 26 Jun 2025)
  • First Level, Second Level
  • Social Studies
  • Pupils will travel back nearly 500 years to 1561, when Mary, Queen of Scots took up residence at the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

    They will start their visit at the Abbey Strand Centre, once a lodging house for Mary’s many courtiers. Find out about important roles of the court from Master Chef to Valet of the Queen’s Bed Chamber; investigate replica objects and see extraordinary clothing. Pupils will be assigned a role in Mary’s Court and receive a courtier’s journal to write in and a courtier's robe to wear, before heading over to the Palace of Holyroodhouse to explore life at Mary’s court.

    At the Palace, pupils will follow in Mary’s footsteps to find out about the six years she spent there, exploring rooms she used, investigating objects and paintings, and hearing stories of some of the most glittering and grisly events in her life.

    Visit includes access to: The Great Gallery, Lord Danley’s Ante Chamber, Lord Darnley’s Bedchamber, Mary, Queen of Scots' Bedchamber, Mary Queen of Scots’ Outer Chamber, The Throne Room and Abbey Strand Learning Centre.

    Facilitated session lasts: 2 hours

    Curriculum for Excellence Experience and Outcomes  

    Second Level

    • I can investigate a Scottish historical theme to discover how past events or the actions of individuals or groups have shaped Scottish society. SOC 2-03a
    • I can compare and contrast a society in the past with my own and contribute to a discussion of the similarities and differences. SOC 2-04a
    • I can discuss why people and events from a particular time in the past were important, placing them within a historical sequence. SOC 2-06a
    Resources

    Mary, Queen of Scots colouring sheet

    Mary, Queen of Scots fact sheet

    Royal Mile Trail

  • Our learning programmes are designed to be accessible to all pupils.  Most of our sessions can be adapted to meet any educational or access needs your group may have.  Please ask for details when booking.

    You may find the information for visitors on the Autism spectrum helpful when planning your visit to The Palace of Holyroodhouse.

  • A lunch room is available for booked groups in the Learning Rooms.  

  • To find out more or to make a booking contact the Learning Bookings team.

    Please have to hand:

    • Preferred date and possible alternatives, plus time of arrival
    • Numbers of children and supervising adults
    • The taught programme you would like
    • Details of any special educational or access needs

    Please use the downloadable Bookings Forms to send your details to the Learning Bookings Team.

    You will then be sent a reservation letter, together with your teachers’ resource pack, giving a date by which full payment must be received to secure the booking.

    Please note: you may be asked to cover the cost of the session if you cancel within short notice of your visit.  Non-booked schools will be charged at standard group admission rates.  Please see our Terms of Application for Learning Group Admissions.

    Contact us

    Learning Bookings Team
    Ticket Sales and Information Office
    Buckingham Palace
    London SW1A 1AA

    T. (+44) (0)303 123 7323
    F. (+44) (0)20 7930 9625
    [email protected]

    Sharing Learning Objectives

    You will find our learning objectives for each taught session on the relevant programme information page.  Sending us your learning objectives prior to your visit will help us tailor the session to your group’s requirements.

    Planning Visits

    Once you have made your booking, we offer two complimentary tickets for you and a colleague to conduct a planning visit.  If you would like to meet a member of the Learning team during this visit, please let us know at the time of booking.

    Teachers' Packs for each site can be downloaded here.

  • Reduced-rate admission for school groups

    Most of our Palace schools sessions are £3 per pupil. Children in P1 and below are FREE.  Please see individual sessions for details.

    Accompanying adults

    One teacher or adult helper is admitted free of charge at the following ratios:

    Under 5s - 1 adult: 3 pupils
    P1 – P4 - 1 adult: 6 pupils
    P5 and above - 1 adult: 10 pupils

    Please ask for details of rates for additional adults when booking.

    All online workshops: £35 per class attending a booked session. 

  • Following your booking a confirmation letter, with an agreed arrival time, will be sent to you; your letter serves as a ticket for your group. The group leader must have a copy of the confirmation letter to present on arrival.

    The Royal Collection Trust Learning section asks that teachers undertake the following guidelines to make entry to Royal Collection Trust sites as smooth and quick as possible:

    • Please arrive at the Royal Collection Trust site at least 5 minutes before the scheduled time for the booked workshop
    • Teachers and children should not bring the following: scissors, compasses, metal cutlery, sharp metallic implements
    • Only bring what you need! The Royal Collection Trust Learning section will provide all necessary equipment such as clipboards, pencils and drawing materials (groups can bring their own sketchbooks if they prefer to use these)

The income from your ticket contributes directly to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity. The aims of The Royal Collection Trust are the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational activities.