Design your own RCPsych Scotland tartan and leave a mark on our history

Scotland news
21 February 2024

A unique competition has been launched for Scottish members to design their own tartan – to mark the 30th anniversary of RCPsych in Scotland.

Tartan is a special type of checked woollen fabric with great cultural and historical importance to the people of Scotland.

Also known as plaid, tartan is made up of horizontal and vertical stripes in different colours on a coloured background.

Originally clans people used local plants, mosses and berries to dye the wool and it’s thought that the oldest tartan goes back some 500 years ago.

There are around 7,000 unique tartans around the world – even former US President Obama and Hello Kitty have their own tartan.

Now members and their friends/family are invited to create their own design to mark three decades of the College in Scotland.

Experts at a chosen design company will be available to translate the design into a strict tartan specification.

The winning entry will then be revealed at the annual RCPsych Congress due to take place in Edinburgh in June.  

Judges will choose their favourite design which must embody mental health in some way and also be creative and original – aligning with RCPsych in Scotland values.

Dr Jane Morris, Chair of RCPsych in Scotland said:

“It’s a very special year for us and what better way to mark it than to launch this creative competition for our members and give them a chance to be a part of our lasting legacy.

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to recreate a part of RCPsych in Scotland’s history.”

Participants can use paper, graph paper, paint, felt tip, crayon or electronic means to design their own tartan and the submission must include a brief concept or rationale behind the design.

Submissions are due no later than Friday 22 March and can be emailed to

For further information, please contact: