The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 2023

The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo Chief Executive Steps Down After Eight Years

October 12 2023

After eight years with The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, including over three as Chief Executive, Major General Buster Howes is to step down this month.

A committed Board Member since 2015, Howes took over the charitable organisation in 2020, notably steering the Tattoo through covid cancellation and leading the completion of two highly successful shows; Voices in 2022 and Stories in 2023, both achieving near sell out runs.

Bill Morris, Chair of the Tattoo Board said, “Buster led the Tattoo brilliantly through one of the toughest periods in its history with the global pandemic forcing two years of cancellation. He and his team demonstrated resilience and fierce character to bring this iconic event back to Edinburgh`s famous Castle Esplanade, rejuvenated and stronger than ever.

“I am, with the entire Board, immensely grateful for his huge contribution over many years on the Board and as Chief Executive, and we wish him well for his next projects.”

Buster Howes says: “I was a Marine for some years and spent long periods at sea. Supply ships play ‘breakaway’ music when their task is completed. Music is surely the first language of the Tattoo, so I have reflected on what my ‘breakaway’ tune might now be: The Black Bear, with all its vivid associations of the march-off, its energy and brawling pipes; or Stevie Small’s poignant Guth a’ Phiobaire - the Lone Piper’s lament of both ‘my’ Tattoos. In the end I chose Unknown Air by the Scottish fiddler Duncan Chisholm.”

The 2023 season of the Tattoo played to near sell out crowds live in Edinburgh and to record crowds in televised broadcasts around the UK and the rest of the world.

Tickets are currently on sale for the 2024 Show, Journeys, which will bring performers from the four corners of the globe together for more breathtaking performances on the Castle Esplanade from the 2nd to the 24th of August 2024.