Designating the Piper Alpha Memorial and Memorial Garden, Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen

Closed 5 Sep 2023

Opened 25 Jul 2023

Feedback updated 9 Oct 2023

We asked

From 25 July 2023 to 5 September 2023, Historic Environment Scotland (HES) sought views on a proposal to list the Piper Alpha Memorial in Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen and to add the Memorial Garden to the Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes.

These sites commemorate those killed in the Piper Alpha Disaster of 1988. Our assessment indicated that the memorial and garden are of national importance for designation. The garden is strongly valued as a public site of memory and for its artistic and other experiential qualities. The memorial is an unusual example of a late 20th century commemorative monument that adopts the style of earlier figurative war memorials. Both sites relate to a historic event of international significance.  

Through Citizen Space, we invited members of the public to tell us if they agreed with the proposed designations and if they had further comments to make. We also asked for views on the proposed designation name of the garden because our research showed there are different understandings of its name.

We consulted directly with the Local Authority as owners of the site and other interested parties, including those who had previously given us their views.

Our selection guidance for designation and the policies we work to are published in the Designations Policy and Selection Guidance document. 

You said

We received a total of 27 responses: One from the Local Authority, two from interested parties and 24 from private individuals via the online survey.

The overwhelming majority of people who responded expressed strong support for the designations. Noone raised issues that brought into question the cultural significance of these sites for designation. Many of the comments provided further evidence for the values of these sites.

We have reported in more detail on the consultation in our Report on Handling, which can be downloaded from the Heritage Portal or from the bottom of this page.

Comments from the online survey are published in full (where we have appropriate permissions). The report can be downloaded from the bottom of this page.

We did

After considering the comments received during consultation, we have

The designation name of the garden is ‘Piper Alpha Memorial Garden/North Sea Memorial Rose Garden’.  We acknowledge that this will not be satisfactory to all. The designation name has no bearing on determining the official name of the garden or what people choose to call it. The name is solely for the purpose of identifying the designation. We would be happy to consider any updates to the designation name in the future on receipt of any new information.

We have published a Report on Handling for this case at Heritage Portal. This can also be downloaded at the bottom of this page.

We have published two new records in the National Record of the Historic Environment

Aberdeen, Hazlehead Park, North Sea Memorial Rose Garden | Canmore

Aberdeen, Hazlehead Park, Piper Alpha Memorial | Canmore


Results updated 9 Oct 2023

Download our consultation report from the online survey.



The Piper Alpha Memorial commemorates the 167 men killed in the Piper Alpha Disaster of 1988  the world's worst offshore oil and gas disaster. It was produced by the artist Sue Jane Taylor following a commission by the Memorial Committee.

The memorial was unveiled in 1991 as the centrepiece of a large formal rose garden in Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen. The garden was designed by the former Director of Parks, David Welch, and was selected as a dedicated memorial garden for Piper Alpha in 1989. An anniversary memorial service is held in the garden every year on 6 July. 

We have been asked by a member of the public to assess the site for designation. After carrying out an assessment, we are proposing to:

  • Add the memorial garden to the Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes as the 'Piper Alpha Memorial Garden / North Sea Memorial Rose Garden'. This would recognise its national importance as a strongly valued public site of memory that connects people and communities to the enduring legacies of the Piper Alpha disaster. Inventory status means that a site’s cultural significance can be taken into account in the planning process.
  • List the memorial sculpture as the 'Piper Alpha Memorial, Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen' at category B. This would recognise its special architectural and historical interest as a rare example of a commemorative monument related to the history of the North Sea oil and gas industry and for its association with an event of international significance. Listing would ensure that the importance of the memorial is taken into account in future decisions about its management.

We have opened this public consultation to gather views on designating both the memorial and the memorial garden.

Find out more about why we think the memorial and garden meet the selection guidance for designation by downloading our Report on Handling from our Portal.

We are also interested in your view on how we record the name of the garden. 

While we have no role to play in determining the official name of the site, we need to apply a designation name and to provide a name of site for the National Record of the Historic Environment. 

Why your views matter

We encourage members of the public to send in their views and comments. You can do this by completing the short questionnaire below

This questionnaire usually takes 5-10 minutes to complete.

Find out what comments we consider and what happens next in our consultation guide or watch our designations video on YouTube.

For a version of this video in British Sign Language, please visit our Youtube channel.

You can find out more about listed buildings and the inventory of gardens and designed landscapes in the Advice and Support section of the Historic Environment Scotland website, and read our heritage designation selection guidance.

What happens next

We will collate and consider your comments and then make a decision on designation. We will publish our decision on our Heritage Portal.