Band of sisters: the female doctors who became war heroes against the oddsBMJ 2019; 367 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l6747 (Published 17 December 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;367:l6747
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REPLY TO BMJ article - 21st December 2019-4th January 2020 'Band of Sisters: the female doctors who became war heroes against the odds'
Whilst I was most interested to see this article by Chris Holme in the British Medical Journal 21/xii/2019-04/i/2020, I am concerned, having devised and personally funded largely royal and VIP Scottish Women’s Hospitals WW1 commemorations in 1998, 2005 and 2008 at the Abbaye de Royaumont, Val d'Oise, that the article outlines all of these in detail yet omits to mention The Trust. Moreover, the BMJ nor the author has contacted the Dr Elsie Inglis-Scottish Women's Hospitals' Trust prior to publication to avoid fundamental errors, when many of your members and subscribers have attended these commemorations to ‘forgotten’ WW1 Edinburgh heroines, not heroes, as guests.
Moreover, I have lectured on this subject since 1997/8 including at The Ministry of Defence Whitehall linked to my exhibition at The MoD, Millbank London, Edinburgh University, Paris and Royaumont France. Mr Holme omits in addition to my 1998 Scottish Women's Hospitals trilogy supported by HM The Queen Elizabeth (Edinburgh, Paris & Royaumont), The Royaumont Scottish granite monument unveiled by The Princess Royal (2008), as well as the rowan tree planted at Royaumont by The Princess in 2005.
NB The film material you mention was from my 1998 Edinburgh, Paris, Royaumont trilogy and researched and edited by myself from French and British archives. Copies were given to various parties including the Scottish Film Archive: matters which should be accredited.
Nonetheless, The Trust are naturally keen that BMJ readers are aware of the very considerable amounts of effort and money already spent to raise awareness of these c1000 iconic yet largely ‘forgotten’ epicentrally Edinburgh women volunteer surgeons, specialists, doctors, nurses and their field hospital colleagues who saved the lives of approximately 300,000 wounded in their pioneering front line field hospitals and triage centres from France to Russia and particularly France and Serbia during The Great War. Yet volunteer women and timeless role model professional British women who not only risked their lives but in many cases gave their lives to save others but British women volunteers who have still not received retrospective British Government recognition or honours.
The Trust would be most grateful for the British Medical Journal to support The Trust’s initiative to raise money for its long planned Royal Mile Edinburgh monument to Elsie Inglis & the Scottish Women’s Hospitals where £250K is sought.
I hope many of the BMJ eadership will wish to financially contribute to The Royal Mile Edinburgh monument.
Ian McFarlane, founder/chair - 09/i/2020
Dr Elsie Inglis-Scottish Women's Hospitals' Trust
 see Neilson-Gray image on the cover of my 1998 programme, Edinburgh, Paris Royaumont
 ….Ian McFarlane has devised and produced the largest corpus [in monuments, opera, concerts, exhibitions, music, film and art.....] of Franco-British /Scottish WW1 commemorations in Edinburgh, London and France to these Edinburgh WW1 women volunteers the Scottish Women's Hospitals founded by the surgeon Elsie Inglis….. Major General David McDowall CBE, GOC Scotland
 …The Queen Elizabeth well remembers the valuable work carried out by the Scottish Women's Hospital during the First World War. The skill, compassion and dedication of the surgical, medical and nursing staff saved many lives and brought them the heartfelt thanks of countless French Servicemen and their families..I was pleased to hear Ian McFarlane's trilogy of events and concerts to mark 80th anniversary of the Hospital Edinburgh, Paris and Royaumont were memorable occasions… HM The Queen Elizabeth patron
 I attended the placing of a historical monument in France as Scotland's Minister for Communities on behalf of the First Minister of Scotland, Mr Alex Salmond MSP. The monument was devised and funded by Mr McFarlane and placed at the Abbaye de Royaumont Val d'Oise France (2008) in recognition of the Scottish Women's Hospitals for Foreign Service founded by Dr Elsie Inglis in WW1… Stewart Maxwell MSP (Minister for Communities)...
 Women in War - Dr Elsie Inglis- Scottish Women's Hospitals, Sort Code: 302581, Account no: 01078952 TSB, 28 Hanover Street, Edinburgh EH12 2DS. Accountant: Ms L Presslie CA, Whitelaw Wells, 9 Ainslie Place, Edinburgh EH3 6AT
 See following page:
THE DR ELSIE INGLIS-SCOTTISH
WOMEN'S HOSPITALS' TRUST
founder/chair Ian McFarlane
THE ROYAL MILE EDINBURGH MONUMENT
Elsie Inglis (1864-1917)
pioneer of social & war medicine
The Dr Elsie Inglis-Scottish Women's Hospitals Trust is the only official
charity to specifically raise funds for the commemorative monument on
the Royal Mile to Edinburgh's Elsie Inglis (1864-1917). This woman
surgeon and pioneer of social & war medicine, Inglis was also founder of
the iconic women volunteers of the Great War, The Scottish Women's
FINANCIAL SUPPORT FROM
Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons of Glasgow supported financially by
The Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons Glasgow and promoted by BMA Scotland the
RCN Scotland a huge number of MSPs & MPs & Edinburgh Council (the Council have
agreed to give the site of the monument on the Royal Mile & upkeep it in perpetuity). Re-
established by Lord Provost The Rev Dr George Grubb: a Trustee who also committed in
law that all Edinburgh Provosts were ex officio trustees, a position they demitted on
leaving office. This follows the Abbaye de Royaumont monument, unveiled by HRH The
Princess Royal, funded by The Trust (2008)
Competing interests: No competing interests