the Casket, a gift fromThe King and Queen, was opened.The Colonels of the
Regiments and Services then each slowly laid their Rolls of Honour on the table
beside the Casket.The Roll for theWomen’s Services was carried by the Duchess
of Atholl wearing the nursing uniform of theVoluntary Aid Detachment.
Shortly after,The King and Queen and Princess Mary arrived and laid wreaths
outside the Memorial.They then moved inside andThe King placed the Rolls of
Honour in the Casket, all except the Roll for theWomen’s Services which was
deposited byThe Queen herself.The Casket, containing over 100,000 names,
was then closed. It was a moving and poignant ceremony and many were in tears.
After the main party had left thousands who had waited on the Esplanade made
their way to the Memorial. Hundreds were carrying wreaths and posies of
flowers which they laid in Crown Square covering the grey flagstones with a
brilliant carpet of colour.
The Continuing Story
In the years after the opening ceremony thousands flocked to the Memorial.
Many inconsolable widows and relatives regularly visited on the anniversary of
the death of their loved one, opening the appropriate Roll of Honour and
running their hand over a name.
In February 1929 Atholl’s original project, the Scottish National Naval and
Military Museum, was opened and survives today as part of the National
Museums of Scotland.
During the SecondWorldWar 1939 - 1945 the Rolls of Honour, the stained glass
windows of the Memorial and many of the contents of the Museum were
removed to safety for fear of bombing.
Following the SecondWorldWar a further 50,000 names were added to the Rolls
this time it was decided to leave the Memorial unchanged as a
masterpiece of Scottish architecture and craftsmanship and no SecondWorldWar
Battle Honours were added to the Regimental bays.And it thus remains, a
Memorial to all who have died since 1914. Names are regularly added.
Today, the fabric of the Memorial is cared for by Historic and Environment
Scotland whilst the maintenance of the Rolls of Honour and the running of day-to-
day activities is the responsibility of theTrustees of the Memorial and a small staff.
Maintenance of the Rolls of Honour is expensive and as the Memorial is run as a
Charity, donations put into the two boxes inside the Memorial are always welcome.