Historic Environment Scotland case study

Name of organiser: 21CCProductions
Name of event: Scotland incentive: a twist on the traditional Location: Stirling Castle 

Leading event management business, 21CC Productions organised an incentive and reward trip for 100 overseas guests in October 2019. The reward trip included shopping, exploring Edinburgh and other famous Scottish landmarks, enjoying Scottish hospitality and solving challenges based around a spy theme, but the highlight of the visit was a final, spectacular event in the Great Hall at Stirling Castle. The brief for 21CC was to make every guest feel important and blown away by the experience – and post-event feedback showed they got it right!

Created around a traditional Scottish dinner which would wow the guests, many of whom were under 35, the event commenced with classic drinks and dinner. Guests were seated at long banqueting tables within the grandeur of the Great Hall, mirroring historic events that had taken place within the surroundings. They were then served the very best in Scottish fine dining, while enjoying the atmosphere being created by a traditional live clarsach player. An after dinner piper then brought a twist to the spectacle as he took the evening through a transformation. As he played, the historic Great Hall with innovative sound and light, erupted into an exciting live DJ club night and every guest took to the dance floor.

Stirling Castle was a key component of the itinerary and therefore was the focal point of the visit to Scotland, with the rest of the two-day experience fitting around it. Being well situated in the Scottish Central Belt, the Castle’s location offered a high standard of local accommodation which allowed guests to walk to and from the venue.  Its location also offers great accessibility to airports and Scotland’s major cities. The Great Hall itself was a superb setting because of its grandeur; the appearance of the Piper from the spiral staircase; the Minstrel’s Gallery for the surprise DJ set; the architectural features such as the arched windows and the outstanding hammer-beam roof all lend themselves to creative lighting; and the fabulous spaces for dancing. 

Julie Ogilvie of 21CC Productions explained why the Great Hall at Stirling Castle was the perfect setting for the event:

“The location is so iconic and fabulous, being so classically Scottish, and yet it made the most stunning backdrop for late night dancing. Stirling Castle just gave the event the status it required and brought our ambitions to life.”

“Working with Historic Environment Scotland (HES) is always a good experience. We’ve worked with the team for many years, delivering a full range of events including corporate dinners, product launches and private parties. We fully understand the site guidelines and allowances and we work closely with our clients and HES to make these events happen. For this experience, we proposed using a vastly different layout to the normal; we wanted to create a huge wow moment when our guests saw and heard the appearance of our surprise DJ. The HES and Benugo teams worked with us to make this happen and when the DJ started it really was one of those event moments that we will all remember!

“As always with HES, it went well because we have a tried and tested formula for working together. The outcome was a perfect blend of traditional Scottish with the essential cool party element at the end of the night.”

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