Melvin Makes Move on Tourist Market

A music producer at BBC Scotland is diversifying: to provide visitors to Edinburgh a personalised audio tour of the capital’s key attractions.

Richard Melvin produces Jim Gellatly’s Music Bed on BBC Radio Scotland every week and wrote and released the two novelty hit records, ‘Scotland, Scotland…Jason Scotland’ and ‘Santa's a Scotsman’.

A third novelty song, ‘The Ashes with Phil Tufnell’, might not be faring as well as his first two, but he’s hoping to register a success with Real History Talks. Richard is working in collaboration with his cousin, John Melvin, and John’s father, Eric.

Says Eric, the tour’s author and narrator: “On my regular trips up and down the High Street, I am regularly struck by the number of visitors trying to make some sense of the scenes around them from a guide book. 

“There is very little in the way of information boards to help them, nor is there any interpretive centre that ‘sets the scene’ for visitors. I don’t think that the visitor, particularly the independent visitor, is well-served by what is available to them. With Real History Talks we want to change that and give visitors accurate edutainment. I love Edinburgh and want visitors to get an idea about why this city is so special.”

The tour is downloadable from and costs £4.99.

Comment: I would like to point out that there is a company – Roam Edinburgh (see – that is already offering tourist this option. Their company has added benefits over a simple audio download, like GPS location and not only do they provide an audio track (with commentary), they also provide this with photographs so you can identify the specific point of interest, a suggest itinerary for ‘wet days’ in Edinburgh, which list all the free attractions and also the nearest restaurant to your location.

Not only is this programme fully downloadable over the internet, but you can also hire a complete unit during your stay in the city and have it delivered to your hotel.

Guide books will always have a place in people hearts but technology has moved on and Edinburgh seems to be at the cutting edge of this. Paul Nixon

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