Fund Raising

Fund Raising

On the home front Leith people were actively involved in fund raising for the troops and  other  war  activities.  Women  formed  knitting  groups  to  make  socks  and balaclavas to send to the front. Children formed “theatre groups” and performed “back green” concerts. There were flag days and collections for specific projects. A good example of the latter was when in 1915 some £1,200 was raised for Leith Hospital with around £400 being contributed by Leithers alone.

Leith hospitals were turned over to military use. The Eastern General Hospital which was on the margins of the town was declared a war hospital and many of the injured were treated there including Canadian and troops from the U.A. Many who did not survive are buried in the adjacent cemetery. Leith Hospital was also used for treatment of injuries sustained at the front and for those on convoys to Russia.

It was fitting therefore when hostilities ceased that the people of Leith decided that the memorial to those who fell during the war should take the form of providing a children’s ward at the hospital. The funding of this was by public donations. As during the war the folk of Leith dug deep into their pockets and in the end funds were sufficient to construct a Children’s Wing to the hospital.

Its façade has plaques commemorating the opening of the wing in 1927 and dedications to those who died together with various emblems of the various services. This still stands though the building has now been given over to private housing.

Fund Raising for Leith Hospital. (From the Leith Observer)