Tap the past to preserve the future

Can modern technology really preserve Scottish history?

With fewer and fewer people carrying cash, people just aren’t putting their change into charity collection buckets like they used to.

As a brand steeped in Scottish history, we understand the importance of these charitable donations in the efforts to preserve Scotland’s rich heritage for future generations to enjoy.

That’s why, together with Visa, we’ve teamed up with the National Trust for Scotland. Together, we’ve cleverly installed contactless technology into replicas of some of Scotland’s’ most famous artefacts, allowing National Trust for Scotland visitors to make contactless donations for the first time..

Our replicas include a 200 year old bust of Robert Burns at the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum in Ayrshire and a historic painting of Colonel William Gordon at Fyvie Castle in Aberdeenshire.

The Trust visitors can now simply tap their card on the artworks to make a £2 donation and help preserve Scottish heritage for generations to come. Visit nts.org.uk to support them, become a member, or simply to learn about their work across Scotland.

Please do touch the art!

"Bank of Scotland has been at the heart of Scottish communities for over three centuries and we are proud to share the National Trust for Scotland’s deep passion for the heritage of our country.”

- Ricky Diggins, Network Director at Bank of Scotland


Creating these replicas has been a mammoth collective effort, bringing together experts across conservation, design, art and banking to seamlessly integrate tech within replicas which have all the detail and nuances of the originals.

“As more of us choose to benefit from the convenience, speed and security of contactless payments, we’re always looking for innovative ways to enable people to make contactless payments in places they might not expect.” -

Mike Lemberger, Head of Product & Solutions at Visa in Europe
  • stone carving

    We created The Robert Burns bust using the latest 3D scanning technology, building a mould which captured every detail of the 200-year-old original. The mould was then scaled up to human proportions and subtle details were added to his face and hair. A hand with an inbuilt contactless device was then created on a separate plinth. A wee, sleekit, cowran, tim'rous beastie at the base of this plinth was also added, a nod to Burn’s famous poem ‘to a mouse’. Finally we applied a marble effect finish to match the look and feel of the original.

    This replica is housed just a stone’s throw away from the original bust. The Trust looks after a wealth of Robert Burn's legacy, including original writings, first editions, and Burns's duelling pistols, which attract 165,000 visitors every year. Plan your visit.

  • We used a pastiche painter with many years experience to re-create Fyvie castle’s most famous painting by Pompeo Batoni. Spot the subtle new details added, such as the Goddess Roma holding a contactless card, and of course the contactless reader, painted using 18th century brush strokes, in the hand of William Gordon himself. Scottish workers in high-vis were also hidden in details of the painting - helping with the renovation of the Colosseum. Once completed, toner was added by specialists at the British Association of Paintings Conservator-Restorers, to ‘un-restore’ the painting, matching the craft of the original. Visitors will be able to tap the painting to donate £2.

    The Castle receives 57,000 visitors a year. Plan your visit.

    painting of Colonel William Gordon


“Like all charities, we face a significant fundraising challenge as cash donations have fallen sharply in recent years. This initiative could not come at a more crucial time and will enable us to accept contactless donations at our sites for the first time.”

- Simon Skinner, Chief Executive at the National Trust for Scotland

The National Trust for Scotland is the charity that celebrates and protects Scotland’s heritage. Every day, the hundreds of thousands of members, donors, volunteers and staff at the charity help to protect Scotland’s natural and national treasures for us all to enjoy.

Your donations go towards preserving:

  • 8 national nature reserves,
  • 38 gardens and designed landscapes,
  • 46 majestic munros,
  • 400 islands and islets,
  • 26 castles and great houses,
  • 300,000 precious artefacts,
  • 76,000 hectares of countryside.

If you would like to become a member, or learn about their work across Scotland, please visit nts.org.uk or make a donation online.

painting of Bank of Scotland debit card being tapped against a card reader.

Bank of Scotland plc. Registered in Scotland No. SC327000. Registered Office: The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ. Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under registration number 169628.