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Edinburgh Zoo

Panda tartan takes the media world by storm!

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By Noel Young, Correspondent

January 28, 2012 | 3 min read

It has to be most inspired piece of Scottish PR for years! When the pandas arrived at Edinburgh zoo last month , sure that was a good story. But when they got their own tartan, WOW! , the media world caught fire this week .

The panda tartan (plus panda)

Helped by an excellent PR handout pic from the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland the story ricocheted round the globe. This story is from the San Jose Mercury News in California:

"Edinburgh Zoo on Tuesday unveiled a new panda tartan, commissioned to commemorate the pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang. It is black and white. The tartan, approved by the Scottish Register of Tartans, was created by the Edinburgh company Kinloch Anderson.

"Senior director Deirdre Kinloch Anderson explained other elements of the design: "The green line is for the pandas' favourite food of bamboo. There are three fine red lines to represent China. Number 3 is China's lucky number, and also the red lines are in the heart of the design to indicate that the pandas are in the hearts and minds of the Scottish and Chinese people."

"The two 8-year-old pandas arrived at the zoo last month from China: the female Tian Tian (aka Sweetie) and the male Yang Guang (aka Sunshine).

Other animals honored by a registered tartan include springboks, Australian donkeys and the racehorse Red Rum."

Thanks for the publicity. We will forgive the category the story appeared under: Weird News!

Kirsty Franey, the tartan's designer, actually modelled a mini skirt in the tartan for photographers.

The panda tartan story had by Saturday night appeared in 360 newspapers and websites around the globe. It seem every newspaper in Australia carried it. India, Malaya, the Philippines and China (of course) and America, all got into the act . Unfortunately, The two animals were out of the public view today because both are suffering from colic.

Deirdre Anderson said, "We hope that this tartan will "Fly the flag for Scotland" and that tartan merchandise will leave the Zoo gift shop for homes not only in Scotland but all over the world."

From early April panda tartan merchandise will be available at Edinburgh Zoo's gift shop and online shop, www.store.rzss.org.uk

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