FP100: No. 52

Polish mosaic
Polish mosaic
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Polish mosaic

Fife has a strong alliance with Poland but today’s visitors are probably not aware of the bond formed during the Second World War.

After the invasion of their homeland in 1939, many Polish servicemen made their way to the UK with an army-in-exile based primarily in Scotland.

As well as helping to build and man the coastal defences in the Kingdom, the Poles had major training camps at Tentsmuir and at Largo House, the latter providing the home of the The 1st (Polish) Independent Parachute Brigade.

Many soldiers were billeted with families across Fife and this mosaic on the side of the Town Hall in South Street, St Andrews, depicting St Andrew with a Polish soldier, expresses the gratitude of those visiting soldiers for the hospitality received from the townsfolk.

After the war, with Poland behind the Iron Curtain, many of these soldiers made Fife their new home with their names now part of local culture.