Records relating to the Davidson Clinic

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The material is composed of: minute book, 1958-1966; solicitors correspondence 1983-1993; correspondence of the Davidson Clinic Trust; accounts; notices of assignation and disposition; press statements; a notice that had been placed on the Clinic door; and two copies of  The Davidson Clinic 1939-1973.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Davidson Clinic was launched in the early days of the Second World War. It was founded by Dr. Winifred Rushforth, the Rev. Roy Hogg, Minister of the Davidson Church, Edinburgh, and Treasurer Sir John I. Falconer.

Winifred Rushforth was born in 1885 in West Lothian. She was educated at Edinburgh Ladies College in Queen Street before completing Medical Studies at Edinburgh Medical College and then graduating MB ChB from the University in 1908. She spent early career years in India as a missionary, where she married, and then in 1929 she became a candidate for training at the Tavistock Clinic in London. In 1931, she and her husband came to Edinburgh, he to become Registrar and Secretary of the Edinburgh College of Art, and she to establish a clinic along the lines of the Tavistock. By 1939 she had gathered the helpers required, among them the Rev. Hogg, his Session Clerk, and the all important premises - within the Davidson Church. Soon the Davidson Clinic had its own premises nearby in Fettes Row, Edinburgh

The aims and objectives of the Davidson Clinic were similar to those of the Tavistock Clinic, namely therapeutic approaches in mental health. The Clinic spawned the Davidson Family Clinic and its work grew, requiring new and larger premises. The move to Chalmers Street made it possible to open an Occupational Therapy Department, and a hostel for mentally handicapped children was organised in Lauriston Gardens.

In 1951 the Clinic moved to still larger premises in Dalkeith Road, Edinburgh, and a daughter clinic was opened in Glasgow in 1952. In 1967, the Clinic in Edinburgh moved again, this time to Hartington Place.

Dr Winifred Rushforth retired in August 1967 and she received the OBE in 1968. She had always tried to help people achieve their true potential and to develop their true selves and amongst many who were deeply inspired by her insights was Charles, Prince of Wales who - at the suggestion of Sir Laurens van der Post - made a private visit to her. Dr. Winifred Rushforth died in 1983.

Conditions Governing Access

Generally open for consultation to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance.

Acquisition Information

Material acquired via W. Balfour, November 1998, Accession no. E98.69.

Note

The biographical/administrative history was compiled using the following material: (1) Darroch, Jane.  The Davidson Clinic 1939-1973. Gilmerton, Edinburgh: Bishop and Sons Ltd.

Compiled by Graeme D Eddie, Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections Division.

Other Finding Aids

Important finding aids generally are: the alphabetical Index to Manuscripts held at Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections and Archives, consisting of typed slips in sheaf binders and to which additions were made until 1987; and the Index to Accessions Since 1987.

Accruals

Check the local Indexes for details of any additions.