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RoSPA’s centenary culminates with Scottish reception


The culmination of a year of centenary celebrations was marked by RoSPA last night with a reception in Edinburgh.

The reception at The Hub, in the heart of the city’s historic Old Town, on St Andrew’s Day came at the end of the family safety charity’s centenary year, which included a Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace, a visit to its Birmingham headquarters by HRH The Duke of York, and the launch of its Brighter Beginnings Appeal.

Annabelle Ewing MSP, Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, addressed the event, with Clare Adamson MSP, convenor of the Cross-Party Group for Accident Prevention and Safety Awareness, for which RoSPA provides the secretariat, also delivering a speech. Guests included RoSPA’s partners and supporters from across Scotland.

RoSPA began life on December 1, 1916, as the London “Safety First” Council, with the remit of reducing a huge spike in road accidents brought about by blackout conditions of the First World War, and it was not long until it reached Scotland, with the earliest organisation linked to RoSPA being the Edinburgh “Safety First” Council which dates back to around 1925. The first formal Scotland-wide organisation was the Scottish “Safety First” Council, which was established in 1930.

Dr Karen McDonnell, head of RoSPA Scotland, said: “Over the past 100 years RoSPA has led not only famous UK-wide initiatives such as the Tufty Club and the Cycling Proficiency scheme, but also a huge variety of schemes in Scotland which continue to this day, coordinated by our team based in Edinburgh.

“We work to prevent accidents at home, at work, on the road and at leisure, to achieve our vision of life, free from serious accidental injury. Recent highlights include our involvement in Not For Play, Keep Them Away liquid laundry capsules project in Glasgow, and the development and delivery of an SQA Road Safety Qualification.

“Accidents do not have to happen, and we hope to continue spreading this message for the next 100 years.”

Annabelle Ewing said: “RoSPA has played a pivotal role in accident prevention and safety over the last 100 years. It has successfully driven forward and influenced this important agenda and worked tirelessly on a huge variety of projects and campaigns to champion the prevention of accidents in the home, on the road and at work. RoSPA’s work contributes to the Building Safer Communities aim of reducing the number of unintentional harm incidents, including in and around water, across Scotland, and I would like to congratulate RoSPA on its centenary.”

To find out more about RoSPA and its centenary, visit

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