Holyrood welcomes its two-millionth visitor

10/11/2009

Caroline Powley, from Paddock Wood in Kent, became the official two-millionth visitor to the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood today.

At precisely 10.43am, Caroline and her fiancé Neil Dave entered the doors of the multi-award-winning building - taking the total number of visitors to Holyrood to two million since its official opening in October 2004.

This takes the total number of visitors to the Scottish Parliament since its creation in 1999 to nearly 2.5 million - a figure equivalent to half of Scotland's population.

Caroline was delighted to become one of Holyrood's landmark visitors and receive a special Scottish Parliament commemorative silver plate from Presiding Officer Alex Fergusson MSP and a free tour of the building.

Asked how she felt about being the two millionth visitor to Holyrood, Caroline said: "We were surprised that we could just walk in and see so much. We certainly did not expect such a welcome. The Presiding Officer was kind enough to give us a personal tour of the Chamber, which has a great sense of space and light."

The Presiding Officer said: "We are delighted to welcome Caroline and Neil to Holyrood. To have reached such a significant milestone of two million visitors to Holyrood in our 10th anniversary year is particularly pleasing.

"The Scottish Parliament has always worked hard to open its doors to all - and I truly believe that it is our record of seeking to engage with the people of Scotland that has been one of, if not the, greatest achievement of Holyrood to date."

Background
The Scottish Parliament building is open free of charge to the public. Free guided tours are available for the general visitor on non-business days and for Members' guests on business days during parliament terms.  Tours operate regularly throughout each day, from 10am-5pm on weekdays and 11am-4.30pm on Saturdays, subject to availability, offering up to 48 tours each week.

Handsets are also available to provide a summary of the tour in languages other than English.

The free public crèche at the Scottish Parliament caters for children aged six weeks to five years and allows visitors to attend meetings, debates or tour the building while their children are cared for by qualified staff.

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