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Bad branding 1.01 at Edinburgh Castle’s reopened Redcoat Café

Scots have not taken kindly to the reopening of an Edinburgh Castle café with a name honouring the British government army that had a somewhat chequered history, to put it mildly, north of the border.

Edinburgh Castle shared pictures of the refurbished space and welcomed the public back to the Redcoat Café at the weekend.

The Redcoats, whose name was inspired by the uniform worn by British soldiers, took part in numerous colonial conquests around the world on behalf of the British crown from the 16th to 19th century.

Of particular chagrin to Scots, however, the Redcoats massacred supporters of Stuart clamant to the British throne, Charles Stuart, at the Battle of Culloden in 1746, marking not only the defeat of the Jacobite movement, but the dforced end of clan and Gaelic Highland life.

Since the beginning of the Jacobite Rebellion in 1745, the Redcoats had upheld laws which banned Highlanders from carrying weapons, including the traditional broadsword, playing the bagpipes and wearing Tartan and highland dress. The Redcoats were also responsible for ensuring the British monarch was prayed for every day, with prayers imposed before school lessons each morning. Fines, imprisonment, exile and even death awaited those who failed to comply.

The name of the café has not actually changed since the refurbishment:

However the wonders of social media appear to have highlighted it to several Scots who may have previously been unaware of the questionable choice of moniker, and social media was naturally where they also headed to express their anger:

To be fair, such noteworthy nomenclature isn’t the sole preserve of Scottish cafés. Manchester United’s ground, for example, has for years shared its name with Thomas Trafford, the commander of the Manchester and Salford Yeomanry who played a key role in the Peterloo Massacre of 1819, with negligible controversy. Perhaps it’s time for a Twitter campaign?

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