Major event will shine a light on New Lanark

Eye-popping visuals, stunning surroundings, startling aural landscapes and history brought to life'¦ '˜Shining Lives' is an event not to be missed.

Images are nice

This October, the singularly gorgeous buildings of the New Lanark Heritage Site are going to play host to a phantasmagoria of light and sound, with the Shining Lives event celebrating the area’s unique history.

Shining Lives will project video and historic images onto the site itself (an UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001) to tell the fascinating stories of the people who lived in New Lanark and the surrounding Clyde and Avon areas.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The New Lanark Heritage Site began life in the 18th century, operating as a spinning mill village, located on the banks of the Falls of Clyde. It ran under a new form of social order pioneered by humanitarian visionary Robert Owen. For employees of the cotton mill, he ensured safe housing, fair wages, free health care, a new education system for villagers and the first workplace nursery school in the world to all of his employees. It was unprecedented.

Robert Owen's house

In addition to the mill workers, the event will tell the stories of the region’s other industries, music, and social life.

Images will be projected across several walls at New Lanark, while a soundtrack will blend music, sound effects and spoken word to create a unique narrative of the area’s history. The scale of the event means visitors can walk through the ground and immerse themselves fully in the display. The adage of ‘history brought to life’ has never felt so apt: this is history writ so large you can lose yourself in it. It’s advised it’ll take about 45 minutes to experience the breadth of the work fully.

The show has been designed by the internationally acclaimed NOVAK Project Mapping Creative Agency.

NOVAK have created site-specific, grand-scale lighting spectaculars around the world, including the UK’s largest light festival, Lumiere, and the Singapore Night Festival. Their extraordinary work is critically renowned.

New Lanark! So new!

Shining Lives is part of Scotland’s 2017 Year of History, Heritage and Archeology, to celebrate Scotland’s people, culture and historical landscapes.

Annique Armstrong, VisitScotland regional director said: “The historic environment forges connections between people and places, so it’s fitting that during Scotland’s current celebratory themed year, we will be shining a spotlight on New Lanark’s outstanding universal value. The activity will bring the region’s historic past to life in the context of a modern, collaborative and innovative Scotland for both visitors and locals who get the chance to experience this memorable event.”

Shining Lives takes place at the New Lanark World Heritage Site, October 21-22nd, 6.30-9.30pm (last entry 9pm)

Tickets for Shining Lives are free if you register. To register log on to

Spinning mill
Robert Owen's house
New Lanark! So new!
Spinning mill