Recently, there has been a lot of publicity about the theft and destruction of war memorials. Uncaring and unscrupulous people have been stealing memorials and selling them for scrap metal. This is a particularly insensitive crime which insults the brave men and women who gave their lives for our freedom and destroys irreplaceable aspects of our history.
Happily, it’s not all bad news and in Midlothian Local Studies we can report that a lost memorial will soon be returned to its spiritual home.
Some time after the end of the First World War, the Penicuik Co-operative Assocation unveiled a memorial plaque to a dozen of their workers who had lost their lives in the war. It seems that the plaque was originally sited in the Society buildings on Penicuik High Street.
Many years later the Co-operative closed and the building was converted into dwelling houses. During this time, the war memorial was removed and was almost sold for scrap when, by chance, it was rescued by a collector based in Leith. Via a friend-of-a-firend, the memorial has recently been passed to Midlothian Local Studies and will soon be re-sited in Penicuik with the help of the Penicuik History Society.
The memorial records tweve men from the Penicuik Co-operative Assocation who were lost in the war:
James H Cairns
Robert F Frame
Thomas H Hamilton
William R McFeat
William P Richardson
The memorial is made from solid bronze and is extremely heavy.
Midlothian Local Studies is pleased to rescue this important piece of local heritage and to prerserve it for future generations.