The port of Leith is located on the Firth of Forth in the south east of Scotland. In 1833 it became a separate burgh with its own Town Council. In 1920, two years after the Armistice, it became part of the City of Edinburgh. The community of Leith has always placed high value on social justice and inclusion, and pioneered many advances in health and education, setting an example for the rest of Scotland.
As early as 1555 the local trade guilds paid for free education for boys. By 1820 all girls had the same opportunity. In 1777 a free hospital service was established and paid for by local income tax with beds being sponsored by local shopkeepers. By 1780 Leith was contributing significantly to the establishment of public health with the construction of the first public sewerage system in Scotland. In 1890 Leith had electric street lighting, and electric trams from 1905.
It was this ingrained sense of social justice that saw thousands from the Port of Leith volunteer for war service. On the Home Front, men and women from Leith worked in many of the engineering works that were established in the town. Hospital ships used the Port of Leith, the Red Cross ran a dressing station at the Victoria Dock jetty, and part of Leith Hospital became a military war hospital.