Face to Face with Whithorn’s Bishops: New Exhibition opens April 1st 2022

The Whithorn Trust looks after one of the largest archives of mediaeval human remains in Scotland. Now scientists are able to create exact portraits of people long gone – even finding out hair and eye colour from ancient DNA. This new exhibition, which kicks off the Whithorn Trust’s Year of Stories programme, focuses on recent findings which reveal, for the first time since the 13th Century, what one of Whithorn’s Bishops looks like.

Bishop Walter, a man of influence and Chaplain to Alan of Galloway, died in 1235 and his reconstructed face, based on biological data, is shown here for the first time. Later in the year, the Trust will unveil further mediaeval faces. In a creative writing competition, the public will be challenged to imagine the stories of two mediaeval people: a priest with a cleft palate, and an unknown woman buried on a bed of shells. The words from winning entries will animate 3D films of their reconstructed talking heads – to be premiered at Wigtown Book Festival, in person and online.

A ticket for the exhibition, which may be purchased here online in advance, gives 12 months access to the museum, as well as access to an online interactive timeline. Tickets cost £6.00 adult, £15 family, £3.80 child.