Digital experts recognised for Japan crane project efforts

A TEAM of Scottish digital experts has been recognised for its part in helping an historic industrial site in Japan secure World Heritage Status.

A set of commemorative coins and stamps of an historic industrial site in Japan. Picture: Duncan Peet/Historic Environment Scotland/PA Wire

A set of commemorative coins and stamps were presented to staff from the Scottish Ten project, who digitally documented Nagasaki’s Giant Cantilever Crane and No 3 Dry Dock back in 2014.

The data was used in the Japanese government’s bid to have the monuments recognised by Unesco, which it achieved last year.

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The Scottish Ten is a collaboration between specialists at Historic Environment Scotland (HES), experts in 3D visualisation at The Glasgow School of Art (GSA) and digital heritage organisation CyArk.

A set of commemorative coins and stamps of an historic industrial site in Japan. Picture: Duncan Peet/Historic Environment Scotland/PA Wire

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Built by Appleby of Glasgow and erected by the Motherwell Bridge Company more than 100 years ago, the Nagasaki crane remains in service to this day.

No. 3 Dry Dock was the largest dock in Asia when it was built in 1905 and is still in operation more than a century later.

Dr Lyn Wilson, HES digital documentation manager and project manager at The Centre for Digital Documentation and Visualisation (CDDV), said: “As part of the Scottish Ten project, my team and I were delighted to be given the opportunity to document digitally the iconic Nagasaki Crane and other fantastic sites.

A set of commemorative coins and stamps of an historic industrial site in Japan. Picture: Duncan Peet/Historic Environment Scotland/PA Wire

“The Japanese are rightly very proud of these important, extremely well-preserved monuments to their industrial heritage, and we in Scotland should be proud of them too, as many were designed and built by pioneering Scottish engineers.”

Alastair Rawlinson, head of data acquisition at GSA and lead for the Scottish Ten project, said: “We were very pleased when the sites were recognised by Unesco.

“The creation of these stamps and coins not only helps to celebrate that, but potentially raises awareness of these sites to people in Japan and further afield, helps to protect them in the long run and strengthens historic links between our two countries.”

Koko Kato, director of the National Congress of Industrial Heritage and special adviser to the Japanese government, said: “We are delighted to have collaborated with the CDDV team to digitally document the Meiji Industrial Heritage Sites and for these to be recognised by Unesco last year.

“We are now excited to commemorate the global significance of these sites through the issue of these special stamps and coins.”

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