Lord gives rousing speech at Corn Exchange

The Corn Exchange, Dalkeith. Photo courtesy Midlothian Council Local Studies
The Corn Exchange, Dalkeith. Photo courtesy Midlothian Council Local Studies

This article, first published in the Flintshire Observer on January 14, 1915, reports how Archibald Philip Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery and 1st Earl of Midlothian, attended a recruitment event in Dalkeith.

The now-defunct Observer reported: His Lordship said he was not there to speak principally on the subject of this terrible but glorious war, but rather to speak about their noble and historical regiment, the Royal Scots, which had such a claim on their allegiance (cheers).

Scotland had not done badly in recruiting. He saw by the debate in Parliament on the previous night that the southern counties of Scotland topped the list (cheers). They had contributed 237 men per 10,000 of the population, and there was no other district which came up to the 200 per 10,000 (cheers). Therefore they had no claim or reason to appeal to the audience as if they had fallen short of their duty. The only doubt he had was whether their patriotism had always taken the right direction, which was towards the Royal Scots (cheers).

The Lothians, for recruiting purposes, had been wellfished waters, but they had not always been fished by the right fishermen, who were the Lothian Regiment, the Royal Scots. They did not grudge any man to any other Scottish regiment, but it was first necessary for them to see that their own battalions were kept up to their proper strength, of which, he was sorry to say, they were short at present.

His lordship proceeded to speak of the glorious history of the regiment.

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