The First Digital Memorial Garden in Scotland

The first digital-led memorial garden is to open in Saline in Fife after Landsales Direct, a Scottish company won planning permission. The garden will feature small plots of ground in which purchasers can place mementoes of loved ones. However the plots will not be marked out with any visible signs and can only be located using digital technology on smart phones. John MacCallum of JM Planning Services, who is the planning agent representing Landsales Direct said “ The means of people locating the time capsule for their loved one will be through digital technology so they will be able to access it using a QR code.”

The idea of a historic cache of goods or information placed with the intention that they will be accessed at a future date by using a QR code seems somewhat at variance. It is widely debated when time capsules were first used but current evidence suggests they were used as early as 1876 but may be prior to that. In 2014 a Revolutionary-era time capsule was found at the Massachusetts State House dating back to 1795. And now in the digitally- led new memorial garden  items will be interred  along with a buried microchip and a “life story” website  about the deceased person can be triggered  on their phone using a QR code.

So what is a QR code? It is a Quick Response Code which is a type of two-dimensional barcode that can be read using smart phones and dedicated QR reading devices. Whilst a standard barcode stores up to 30 numbers a QR barcode can store up to a massive 7,089!

It is not clear how the memorial garden space will be allocated nor how the owners of the garden will package the various elements such as QR codes but what it does do is pose questions about ownership of digital assets after death. As most of us use some aspect of online shopping, banking or social media it can cause difficulties for executors to deal with your online assets after your death if you do not leave up- to – date information. This has to be balanced of course with the need to maintain security over passwords.

This first digital-led memorial garden I am sure will not be the last and there is little doubt that people should now be thinking about how their digital assets are dealt with when they are gone. If I can help in any way or you would wish to have more information please contact me Marcus Downie by email on marcus@mitchells-roberton.co.uk  or by phoning 0141 552 3422.

This entry was posted in In The News by Marcus Downie. Bookmark the permalink.

About Marcus Downie

Marcus was born and raised in Glasgow but left the West of Scotland to study Law at the University of Dundee, graduating with honours in June 2015. He then returned West to study his Diploma in Legal Practice at Strathclyde University which he completed in May 2016. In the summer of 2013 Marcus began working at Mitchells Roberton, initially to assist with the administrative burden of the merger with Donaldson Alexander Russell and Haddow. Marcus was asked to return the following summers to assist with legal work in various different departments before commencing his traineeship in September 2016. Marcus took a particular interest in property and planning law in the course of his studies and is putting this to use working in the conveyancing department, both on residential and commercial transactions. Marcus is an avid sports fan and in his spare time enjoys playing football, squash and tennis. He is also a keen cyclist, having embarked on a number of long distance tours on the continent.

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