Appeal to find famous ‘Annie’s Doll’ stolen from historical visitor attraction goes viral

A campaign to return a ‘Tartan Barbie’ doll to its ghostly owner at a popular Scottish visitor attraction has gone viral, attracting attention from social media fans across the globe. 

The doll and its story have been a popular feature of The Real Mary King’s Close award-winning history tour since it was left there by the Japanese psychic, Aiko Gibo in 1992. Gibo reported that she felt the spirit of a young girl while visiting one of the 17th century households within the Mary King’s Close site.

According to Aiko Gibo, the young girl, called Annie, was left to die in this building after her parents abandoned her during the plague, a common tale on the 17th century Close.  The spirit was lifted from the room when the psychic returned with a gift of the ‘Tartan Barbie’ that she bought on the Royal Mile.

Now the hunt for the doll has gone international, capturing the hearts and minds of visitors from all over the world. The post has been seen now by over 134,028 people and shared over 700 times with hundreds of people expressing their sympathy with the venue staff.

Paul Nixon, General Manager of The Real Mary King’s Close said:

“It’s not a surprise to me that we have thousands of people from all over the world getting in on the search for ‘Tartan Barbie’. Over the years many visitors have left all sorts of mementos – including several badges from Police Officers has a mark of respect – in what has become a shrine to Annie’s spirit.

As a team we are shocked at the theft of the doll and it’s especially hard for our guides who tell our stories with the utmost integrity — the story of Annie, Aiko Gibo and ‘Tartan Barbie’ have been a significant part of our history for 26 years.

It’s disappointing and incredibly frustrating that someone would take it without any thought for the meaning it has for so many. All we can do is hope that someone can help track her down and the Barbie is returned to the Close.”

Paul and the team at The Real Mary King’s Close have launched an appeal to find Tartan Barbie on social media, with a “no questions asked” policy if she makes her way home.

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