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How soon will I receive my membership cards?

Your membership order will be processed within 5 working days of your order being placed online. Membership cards will be posted no later than day 6 after the order was placed.

When does my membership begin?

Membership starts from the moment you purchase it and will expire at the end of that month the following year. For example, if you buy membership on the 15th April, it will expire on the 30th April the following year.

Can I print off my order confirmation email and get into Historic Scotland properties with this until my cards arrive?

Yes. This email acts as a temporary membership certificate that can be printed off and shown to site stewards to enjoy your membership benefits straight away.

Can I pay monthly but for fewer than 12 months?

No. Historic Scotland Membership is an annual subscription which you can choose to pay for in monthly instalments.

When will I receive the membership magazine?

The magazine is sent out 4 times a year and you will receive the next edition when it comes out. The magazine is published in March, June, September and November. If you would rather not receive a paper copy, you can receive a quarterly email with a link to the online magazine and an accessible downloadable PDF. You can change your preferences in the My Details section when logged in.

I've just bought a membership and would like to take advantage of my 20% retail discount. When can I start using it?

When you buy online, you are emailed confirmation of your membership. You can print this and use it to get free entry to our sites and your retail discount when you visit. 

How do I get my 20% members discount on gift membership?

Once you have your membership cards and you are logged into the Members Only area of the website you will be able to receive your 20% discount. If you purchase a gift without logging in you will be charged the full rate. If you have not yet registered, please do so and within 1 working day you will have access to your account and be able to purchase a gift with the discount.

You have taken more than one payment by Direct Debit. Why?

We are required under the terms of the Direct Debit scheme to give you 10 working days notice before we debit your subscription fee from your account. Depending on the time of the month that we process your monthly Direct Debit, we may take two instalments in your second month of membership to give you enough advance notice of payment coming out of your account. We send out an advance notice letter with your membership cards advising you of exactly when and how much money we will collect from your account. If you are unsure, please refer back to the letter we sent with your cards.

If you believe we have made a mistake, please contact us at your earliest convenience.

Do I need to purchase tickets for events at Historic Scotland properties?

Members get free entry to daytime events and your membership card will give you access so there is no need to book tickets. However, members may need to purchase tickets to other external or evening Historic Scotland events. All of our events are listed on our events programme.  See your Events Guide or your membership magazine for further information.

Does membership allow me to beat the queues or offer fast-track admittance?

Yes, at both Edinburgh and Stirling Castles members can bypass the ticket queues and head straight up to the scanning point for entry.

I would like to cancel my membership but I can't see how to do that online.

Please contact us and we'll advise you of your options. If a monthly Direct Debit is cancelled before the expiry date of the membership, the outstanding balance for the membership will be due to be paid in full.


I would like to renew my membership, but I can't see the link.

You need to be logged in to the Members Only area to be able to renew your membership. If you have not yet registered, please do so and within 1 working day you will be able to renew.

I have logged into the Members Only area of the website so I can renew my membership, but I cannot find the link allowing me to renew.

If you can't see the option to renew, then you might be trying to renew too early. The link will only appear if your membership is due to expire this month. Alternatively, if you pay for your membership by direct debit this link will not appear as your membership is renewed automatically and new membership cards will be sent out to you in the month your membership is due to expire. If you do not feel you are being shown the correct menu option then please contact us and we will look into it.

How long do I have to renew my membership?

If you paid for your membership by cash or credit/debit card, you have 6 months from the expiry date of your membership in which to renew. After this time if you wish to rejoin membership you would do so as a first year member. If you pay for your membership by Direct Debit, we will write to you at the beginning of the month the membership is due to expire with your membership cards for the coming year, and you can decide if you wish to renew.

I would like to renew my membership and also purchase a gift membership. How do I go about this?

You will need to do this as 2 separate transactions. If your current membership has lapsed then you will need to wait until your membership has been renewed to purchase the gift membership with a 20% discount.

I pressed "submit" to buy/renew a membership but there was a problem and I don't know if the payment has gone through.

Even if you receive an error message, the membership transaction might still be submitted. Please check with us before buying a duplicate membership or you may end up paying twice.

I have received 2 confirmation emails. Why is this?

If you pressed the "submit" button more than once, the membership transaction might have been submitted more than once. Please contact us at your earliest convenience.

Gift Memberships

If I want my gift sent directly to my friend, when will it be sent?

Any gift membership to be sent directly to the recipient will be sent within 5 working days.

Can I pay for a Gift Membership by Direct Debit?

Gift membership is not available to pay by Direct Debit.

When do gift memberships start?

Gift memberships start from the date they are purchased and will expire at the end of the same month in a year's time. Gift membership cannot be post-dated.

When do gift memberships expire?

The expiry date will be the last day of the month 12 months after the membership is bought.

I've received a renewal reminder for a gift membership which I bought in the past. Can I renew this online?

No. Please contact us to renew a gift membership or return the completed renewal form.

Gift Aid

What is Gift Aid?

Gift Aid is a government scheme that adds 25p to every £1 you give - at no extra cost to you. Gift Aid is an easy way to ensure that charities receive more benefit from money given to them. Members who sign up to Gift Aid will be making a much-valued additional contribution to the charitable work of HES.

Why does HES need Gift Aid?

The ability to claim Gift Aid income is very important to HES because it will bring much needed income to help protect, conserve and preserve our historic environment for generations to come.

Has Historic Scotland Membership changed with the introduction of Gift Aid?

No. All your member benefits remain the same.

Am I eligible to make a Gift Aid declaration?

To qualify for Gift Aid you must pay an amount of UK tax (Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax) at least equal to the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all your donations in that tax year. If you pay less UK tax (Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax) than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all your donations in that tax year it is your responsibility to pay the difference.

I don't pay tax but my partner does. Can I still give Gift Aid?

If you have joint membership and your partner pays tax, and they are the lead member on the membership (and therefore on the Gift Aid declaration) then he/she can tick the Gift Aid box provided that the membership is paid either from your partner's account or from a jointly held or named account. If you are an individual member, you must personally pay for your membership in order to tick the Gift Aid box.

Can I still give Gift Aid on an Historic Scotland Membership I give as a gift for a friend?

No, we cannot claim Gift Aid if you purchase membership on behalf of a friend. But if, at their renewal, your friend chooses to pay for the membership themselves and is a tax payer, then they can tick the Gift Aid box when their membership is due for renewal in a year's time.

Can I change my mind one I've joined the scheme?

You are entitled to cancel your Gift Aid declaration at any time. Should you choose to withdraw from the scheme, or if you no longer pay enough Income or Capital Gains Tax to cover the amount claimed by us, please just let us know and we can take your membership subscription out of the Gift Aid scheme.

What membership categories are eligible for Gift Aid?

All categories with the exception of Life Memberships are eligible. Any memberships that are paid for as gifts are NOT eligible.

I would like to sign up to Gift Aid for my membership. How do I do that?

We are unable to take gift aid declarations online yet. In the meantime you can download, print and return this Gift Aid Declaration to us.  Alternatively, you can call us on 0131 668 8999 and we will post you a declaration to complete and return.

I have a joint membership - why is only one of our names on the declaration?

In order to claim Gift Aid on joint memberships we need to send out the Gift Aid letter to one named person. Therefore if the "lead member" on the membership is the payer (or one of the joint payers) then we send the Gift Aid declaration to them.

There is no signature part on the Gift Aid declaration. Is this a mistake?

No, this is not a mistake. In September 2015 a new, shorter and clearer, Gift Aid declaration was approved by HMRC. It means that a signature is no longer required. Your name is on the declaration so all you need to do is tick the box to say either "Yes" or "No" and return this to us.

I need to change my Gift Aid declaration status, what do I do?

Call us on 0131 668 8999 and we can discuss the options for changing your status. This may mean we have to send a new gift aid declaration out in the post to you.


I have registered for the Members Only area and waited for 1 working day, but I still get a message saying that my membership is being processed. Why can't I see anything on the website?

The Members Only section is only viewable by current members of Historic Scotland. If you have registered for the site without buying a membership then you will never see anything in the Members Only section. When you buy a membership you will be invited to register for the website. Please do not try to register unless you are a current member of Historic Scotland.

I have been trying to log in, but I've received a message saying, "Account has been locked due to repeated failed logins." What do I do now?

The website will lock you out after 4 failed login attempts. This means that you have incorrectly entered your password (you may have missed out a capital letter somewhere). At the bottom of the login page there is a link to request a username or password reminder that will be sent to you by email. After 30 minutes you can attempt to log in again.

I have been trying to log in, but I've received a message saying, "please enter a valid Username and Password".

Please check the username you entered is the one you set up (not necessarily your email address). Please check that you have entered your password correctly and not missed a capital letter somewhere. At the bottom of the login page there is a link to request a username or password reminder that will be sent to the email address you registered with. If you are still unable to log in, please contact us.

I just bought a membership but I have not received a confirmation email. Is something wrong?

It may be that your email address was entered into the system incorrectly when you purchased membership and we have been unable to deliver your confirmation email. If you did not get a confirmation screen at the end of your order, your purchase session may have been timed out and your order not processed. Contact us to find out if your order has gone through.

I've received two confirmation emails. Why is this?

If you pressed the “Submit” button more than once, the membership transaction might have been submitted more than once. Please contact us at your earliest convenience.

I pressed “Submit” to buy a membership, but there was a problem and I don’t know if the payment has gone through. What can I do?

Even if you receive an error message, the membership transaction might still be submitted. Please check with us before buying a duplicate membership or you may end up paying twice.

I am registered for the Members Only area but I can't remember my User ID/password. Can you help?

Please click on the Members Login button to go to the login page, then click on the Forgotten User ID/Password link. Type in your email address and click Submit. You will shortly receive an email containing your User ID and a link to reset your password.

The other person on my membership has already registered for the Members Only area and has a User ID and password. Can I also register or do I have to use the same login details?

If you have a joint membership with someone else, then there will be one login for this membership. In that case you will need to use the login details that they have set.

Change of Details

I pay for my membership by direct debit. Can I change my bank details online?

No. This can only be done over the phone or by returning a paper direct debit mandate that we can send out to you at your request. Please contact us to arrange this.

Can I change the payment date for my direct debit?

All direct debits are payable on the 1st working day of the month and we are unable to change this.

I want to change the 2nd adult on my membership. Can I do this online?

If you are about to renew your membership you can amend your category and the names of the members on it when you renew. However, if you are midway through your membership you cannot transfer membership to another person. Please contact us and we can advise you about the changes you might wish to make to your membership.

How can I change my user ID or password?

When logged in, go to the My Details page. From here you can amend your user ID and/or password by entering the appropriate new information and pressing update.


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