A CROWDFUNDER aiming to put a letter written by Robert the Bruce in 1312 back on public display has been launched today by the National Trust for Scotland.

The trust hopes to help preserve the letter, which is one of the oldest surviving documents in its collection, and protect it with a state-of-the-art case. 

If the £24,000 target is achieved, the cash would see the letter displayed alongside interactive audio and video elements and translated into different languages to allow all visitors to engage and learn from it.

The letter, written at Brodie Castle, Moray, was removed from display at the property earlier this year after it began to fade due to environmental factors. Now the National Trust for Scotland hopes to raise enough cash to let the public see it again without temperature, humidity and light conditions causing further harm to it.

James Dean, operations manager at Brodie Castle (below), said: “Few documents from this time survive intact and are still legible, so we are very fortunate and honoured to care for this special piece of our past, especially as it was written by such an important figure in Scotland’s history.

The National:

"By reaching our target for this appeal we’ll be able  to protect the letter and present it in a way that means more people will be able to appreciate it for years to come - and there’s no better day to call on people for their support for this campaign than on Scotland’s national day.

“The cutting-edge technology of the cabinet makes the letter more accessible and interactive, showing illustrations, photography and videos to visitors. It will also translate the letter into multiple language and explain its historical context.”

Written in Latin on Vellum paper, the letter predates the oldest parts of Brodie Castle by around 200 years. It is one of the few family papers that survived a fire in 1645.

The translation of the letter reveals that Robert the Bruce demanded that the Thane of Brodie take proper care of his mill pond as the neglect had annoyed the local monks of Pluscarden Abbey near Elgin. 

The document offers insight into Robert the Bruce's authority as well as medieval kingship and the way of life for landowners 700 years ago.

Find out more about Brodie Castle at www.nts.org.uk/visit/places/brodie-castle and make a donation to the cause at www.justgiving.com/campaign/robert-the-bruce.