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PE1855: Pardon and memorialise those convicted under the Witchcraft Act 1563

Petition summary

Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to pardon, apologise and create a national monument to memorialise those people in Scotland accused and convicted as witches under the Witchcraft Act 1563.

Petitioner: Claire Mitchell QC

Status: Closed

Date published: 03 February 2021

Click here for the full petition

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee Consideration

SPICe Briefing

Committee meetings

1 September 2021: The Committee agreed to write to both the petitioner and the Scottish Government.

Official Report of Meeting 1 September 2021

19 January 2022: The Committee agreed to keep the petition open until it is established whether a Members’ Bill is likely to be progressed on this topic. The Committee also agreed to consider inviting the petitioner to provide evidence to the Committee at a future date. 

Official Report of Meeting 19 January 2022

23 February:The Committee took evidence from petitioners Claire Mitchell QC and Zoe Venditozzi. The Committee agreed to consider the evidence it had heard  at a future meeting.  

Official Report of Meeting 23 February 2022

18 May 2022: The Committee agreed to write to the Scottish Government and Natalie Don MSP.

Official Report of Meeting 18 May 2022

23 November 2022: The Committee agreed to close the petition under rule 15.7 of Standing Orders on the basis that, the First Minister has provided an apology to those people in Scotland accused and convicted as witches under the Witchcraft Act 1563, Natalie Don MSP is continuing to progress her proposed Members Bill in relation to the pardon and the petitioner has indicated that work is underway to take forward plans for a national memorial.  

Official Report of Meeting 23 November 2022

Written Submissions