Why is the 1821 Appeal needed?

Lord Vallance of Tummel

Lord Vallance of Tummel

"University education shapes lives. It broadens horizons, raises aspirations and enriches our futures – it can be truly transformational.

"Education has certainly shaped and enriched my own career and life and I have always tried to pay that back in one form or another.  That is why I am so passionate about ensuring everyone has these same opportunities.

"Our 1821 Appeal matters to me as we intend to achieve exactly that aim. As an Honorary Graduate of Heriot-Watt, I am especially proud to champion a cause so close to my heart at my honorary alma mater.

"Join me in supporting the 1821 Appeal. Together we will deliver the life-changing power of a Heriot-Watt education for many individuals and shape history for another 200 years."

Lord Vallance of Tummel, Chair of the 1821 Appeal Board

Professor Richard A Williams, Principal and Vice Chancellor of Heriot-Watt University

Professor Richard A Williams

"At Heriot-Watt University, we have been pioneering in improving access to education for 200 years. Our ethos, ‘to benefit and shape society by providing educational opportunities for students to develop their talents’, underpinned the foundation of our institution in 1821. It remains a guiding principle for the University today.

"Our vision has always been to bring together the best minds, from all backgrounds, to learn, share and collaborate to change the world for the better. The 1821 Appeal is absolutely vital for achieving our vision.

"The 1821 Appeal is the cornerstone of our new global access and inclusion strategy. This strategy is driving our approach to widening participation in the broadest ways possible. Our aspiration is to shape Heriot-Watt to be a place where everyone is empowered to thrive, especially since the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been felt hardest by those from more vulnerable backgrounds.

"As a part of the Appeal, a doctoral scholarship will also be established to study the impacts of our access and inclusion initiatives over the coming years.  

"The 1821 Appeal reframes our future. It facilitates the expansion of targeted scholarships, and essential advocacy and support for under-represented students. Your support will deliver life-changing impact for so many under-represented and disadvantaged students that we work with every day, and for many more in the future."

Professor Richard A Williams, Principal and Vice Chancellor

The 1821 Appeal Board

Both Professor Williams and Lord Vallance are members of the 1821 Appeal board. The board is made up of a small group of diverse people that lead the 1821 Appeal to widen access to education across the world. The board provides support and guidance on our projects, whilst ensuring they align with the University’s widening access policy and its mission to becoming truly global. 


  • The Lord Vallance of Tummel, Chair of the Appeal Board
  • Professor Mushtak Al-Atabi
  • Mr Grant Innes
  • Professor Ammar Kaka
  • Emily Lucy King
  • Dr Bob Keiller CBE
  • Cameron Millar
  • Bryan Milton
  • Professor Heather McGregor
  • David D Murray
  • Sir Geoff Palmer
  • Helen E.R. Sayles CBE
  • Professor Richard A Williams

Support the 1821 Appeal