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Tree of Life
Remembering the Leith Battalion

In partnership with Out of the Blue Arts centre and Hide and Seek Art Glass a tree has been designed, and built, with the aid of Hawthorne joinery, to display 216 glass ID discs.

The ID discs, inspired by the original discs being developed during WW1, show, alternatively, the individual names and ages of each of the men of the Leith Territorial Battalion who died in the Gretna Rail Disaster of 1915.

The personal details are kiln fired onto white opalescent glass which, when backlit, transmits an amber glow. Once a hole is drilled into each, the discs are then defined by a surround of copper foil, solder and patina.
The use of copper rods, strips and wire are interwoven to thread through the discs whilst creating soldered branches and a twisted mesh of vines which combine to envelop the entire tree.

The tree, approx 9 ft in height, will stand in permanent display within the Leith Drill Hall in Dalmeny Street. The Tree of Life will take a position of prominence during the OOTB Gretna 100 exhibition in May 2015. The venue is the old 1/7 Royal Scots Leith Battalion Drill Hall and Territorial Army HQ. Indeed, the Drill Hall will be a fitting and lasting home for the piece.

Young people from Leith Academy's Prince's Trust XL Group have undertaken research, uncovering the ages and personal details of each of the casualties, for inclusion on the ID discs. Additionally a number of young people have taken part in a workshop, facilitated by Hide and Seek Art Glass, to learn the processes involved in the creation of the individual discs.

Leith Academy pupils researching ages of casualties at Register House for inclusion on ID discs.

The Tree of Life, currently being displayed in Out of the Blue Art Centre.






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