On Tuesday 29th June, Her Majesty The Queen, our Colonel-in-Chief, came to open the new museum.  The sun shone, and Her Majesty arrived full of enthusiasm and looking forward to seeing what we have achieved.  Her Majesty was given a tour by Colonel AK Miller and met all the key members of the Museum staff, and representatives from Historic Environment Scotland, contractors, the National Lottery Heritage Fund, and major donors who had been involved with the redevelopment.  Her Majesty took a deep interest in all aspects of the Museum.  I took enormous pleasure, on behalf of all Argylls, in asking Her Majesty, as our Colonel in Chief, and longest serving Argyll (74 years), to formally open the new Museum.  It was a great moment.  I can confidently pass on that Her Majesty was also extremely grateful to be greeted by a considerable gathering of loyal Argyll veterans, who followed Her Majesty to the entrance of the Castle with a rousing three cheers.  A great end to a truly happy visit.

This has been a long project, and one that the Trustees felt was absolutely necessary, in order to display and record the deeds of our wonderful Regiment for future generations.  The new Museum does not just tell about our exploits in battle and on operations, but is as much about where the Regiment came from, against a background of Scotland’s history at that time, and how we lived.  I strongly encourage you all to visit the new Museum, if you have not already done so.  We are also looking for volunteers to help in the Museum.

The financial and very practical support of the Regimental Association has been absolutely crucial, as has the considerable financial support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, and other very generous donors.

At the start of the project it was easy to have good ideas, but not so easy to find someone with the energy and dogged perseverance to bring it to life, raise the money and to drive the project forward. Colonel AK Miller volunteered to be the Project Director, and through multiple challenges, and with sheer perseverance and determination he has driven the project from start to finish, supported by our Chief Executive Richard Hickson and the Museum team.  The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders owe a very considerable debt of gratitude to Colonel AK, for without him I doubt we would have achieved our aim.

Looking to the future, Brigadier Adam Griffiths OBE (late 1 A and SH and Royal Regiment of Scotland), has now taken over from me as Chairman of the Regimental Trust.  He, with his Trustees, will plot the way forward.  Colonel AK will chair the Museum Committee and Colonel Bobby Steele will continue to run the Regimental Association.

Brigadier Bruce Russell

All images (c) Mark Owens/ArmyInScotland