This note is to inform members of the Leith Neighbourhood Partnership of the proposal by the Merchant Navy Memorial Trust (Scotland) to erect a memorial in Leith to Scottish merchant seamen lost at sea.

The Trust was established in 2009. It is chaired by William Thomson, Chairman of John Menzies PLC and E G Thomson (Holdings) Ltd. The Trust is supported by an Advisory Group chaired by Professor Gordon Milne. Members include Cllr Rob Munn, the Deputy Provost and Tom Aitchison, the Council's Chief Executive. The project is also supported by Forth Ports, the Northern Lighthouse Board and Trinity House Maritime Museum, amongst others.

The memorial has been designed by Jill Watson, a local sculptor. It will be located on the Shore in the centre of the space outside Malmaison. The site is owned by Forth Ports. The Trust will be offered a long ground lease from Forth Ports. The existing sculpture will be relocated.

The Trust has recently applied for planning permission for the memorial. The plans show the general form of the memorial but not the details. The application (no 10/00720/FUL) is currently available for public comment on the Planning Portal at Click Here

The Trust already has a substantial sum of money committed by private donors, including shipping companies and individuals. The Lord Provost will launch a public fund raising campaign on 21 April. At this point the patron of the Trust will be announced, details of the design will be released and the website will go live.

Considerable media coverage is expected. The Evening News has already run a piece on the planning application, available on-line at Click Here

The Trust expects to unveil the memorial and hold a service of dedication in November 2010. Once complete, a sum of money will be passed over to the Council to cover on-going maintenance.

If you have any general queries about the project, please contact John Inman, Development Planning Manager, City of Edinburgh Council, at or 0131 469-3721.