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Great Polish Map of Scotland

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The Great Polish Map of Scotland is located the village of Eddleston, near Peebles.

It was constructed in the 1970s, in recognition of Scottish hospitality to Polish soldiers during World War II.

It is said to be the largest topographical relief model in the world.

It is a large physical relief map of Scotland, sculpted in concrete and measuring approximately 40 x 50 metres (and 1.5 m deep) in the grounds of Barony Castle, Eddleston, was once home to the Murrays of Elibank, and later the Hotel Black Barony.[1]

Mapa Scotland (the Great Polish Map of Scotland Restoration Committee) was formed in 2010 to ensure its restoration and preservation.[2]

The map was B-listed by Historic Scotland in 2012.

The map was conceived by Jan Tomasik, a Polish soldier who had settled in Scotland and become a successful hotelier, and his former commander General Stanislaw Maczek (1892 - 1994), who had led the First Polish Armoured Division based in Scotland, and had established his headquarters at Barony Castle.

Polish forces had been given the task of defending most of the east coast of Scotland against an expected invasion. To help with planning their strategy, a large topographic map of Scotland was created near the castle in late 1940, showing roads, railways, and military units, but was dismantled after the war.


In the late 1960s, Tomasik bought Barony Castle and invited Maczek to spend time there. Maczek had been inspired by the earlier map, but also by an outdoor map of land and water in the Netherlands that he had seen in 1944. The pair decided to create the Polish Map of Scotland as a permanent memorial and to thank the people of Scotland for their hospitality towards the Polish troops during World War II. A Polish cartographer was found to bring the project to fruition - Dr. Kazimierz Trafas (1939 - 2004) of the Geography Institute at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, along with his colleague Roman Wolnik. The planning was completed in Poland and then the pair came to Scotland in 1974 to set out the model using detailed surveying techniques. The map is at a scale of 1:10,000, with heights exaggerated by five times to ensure a recognisable topography. The model of Ben Nevis reaches 67cm (26.3 inches) in height. A 1.5m-deep oval pond was built to surround the map and flooded to represent the sea. Pumps and pipework were installed to fill inland lochs and provide rivers which flowed in a realistic manner from their sources. The construction work was completed after a ten-month break between May and July 1975. The model was painted the following year, highlighting urban areas and forests, and the pond filled with dyed water.

After becoming overgrown and lying forgotten for almost 30 years, the pond was drained and the map cleared of undergrowth by the then owners of Barony Castle, De Vere Venues.


The restore map was opened to visitor on 12 April 2018.


1 The Great Polish Map of Scotland Retrieved 11 March 2018.

2 The Great Polish Map of Scotland Retrieved 11 March 2018.

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Aerial views



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