Linlithgow High Street
The Great War had a profound effect on the country’s shopkeepers. Right from the outset they had to contend with rising prices and shortages; a ‘war economy’ with the public being exhorted to avoid purchasing luxuries; and staff volunteering, or being called up, for the army. As the years passed, the introduction of even more stringent restrictions on lighting, opening hours, prices, and eventually full-blown rationing all added to their burden.
The advertisements carried in the pages of the Linlithgowshire Gazette throughout the war years shed an interesting light on how this affected the shops along Linlithgow High Street:
In aid of the FLAG DAY … there will be A SHOP
In April 1915 an entry in the Gazette’s advertisement column offered ‘To Let, Shop, 147 High Street, Linlithgow; Butcher’s, Fishmonger’s, or other Business […]’. It appears that the premises remained vacant and, in March 1916, an advertisement in respect of the Belgian Refugee Fund Flag Day intimated that 'there will be A SHOP at 147 High street, where GIFTS OF ALL KINDS will be gratefully received. The Shop will be open for the receiving of such on the Afternoon and Evening of Friday, as well as Saturday'.
For more details of how the war affected this, and some of the other shops on Linlithgow's High Street, see the PDF below.