Erskine has been looking after our veterans for almost 100 years and is the leading care organisation for ex-Service men and women in Scotland.
Caring for our hero sons
The devastation of the First World War highlighted the fact that there were insufficient hospital facilities to care for those who were wounded in battle. Thanks to the generosity of the people of Scotland, the first Erskine Hospital, then The Princess Louise Scottish Hospital for Limbless Sailors and Soldiers, was opened in October 1916.
Of the many thousands of British veterans who were disabled in battle, one in five was treated at Erskine.
Help for amputees
The desperate shortage of artificial limbs for amputees returning from the war was resolved by the hospital’s first great surgeon, Sir William Macewen. Recruiting skilled workers from the nearby Clydeside shipyards, the Erskine limb was soon devised and over 600 fitted. Carefully crafted much of the work was done by the patients themselves.
In 1916, few could have predicted the growing need for Erskine care in the 20th century and beyond. Sadly, conflicts such as the Falklands, the Gulf, Bosnia and Iraq continued to put pressure on our facilities. Erskine needed to change to meet the needs of veterans in the future.
Changes for the new century
In April, 2000, The Princess Royal officially openedÂ Erskine Mains Home, in the heart of the town of Erskine. With 34 beds, it heralded the completion of the first phase of â€˜Erskine 2000â€™ a strategy to replace the existing building and take Erskine care Scotland-wide.
Following a high profile nationwide appeal for support, Prince Charles officially opened our newÂ Erskine HomeÂ in October 2000. The new building, no longer a hospital, would be a flagship for care of the future. Located on the site of the former nursery gardens, the Â£16 million centre of nursing care excellence will serve us well for many years.
We are also in the process of rebuilding over 50Â veteranâ€™s cottagesÂ at Bishopton â€“ suitable for ex-Service people and their families. We also haveÂ partnership arrangementsÂ with care homes in Aberdeen, Dundee and Inverness â€“ delivering Erskine care across Scotland.
Today Erskine remains committed to looking after Scotland’s ex-Service and Serving men and women for as long as the need is there. An on-going development programme is in place to ensure that we meet the needs of this brave community in the future.
Everyone at Erskine shares the sentiment expressed by Prince Charlesâ€™ during the opening ceremony over a decade ago, “I am very proud of Erskine’s strong tradition of caring.”