The grocery store at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, c 1910.
The man behind the counting house desk, centre, is keeping stock records. The young man and woman to his left and right are presumably store assistants, helping to manage the store and deliver groceries to the wards and departments. The shelves in the background are stacked high with biscuits, cocoa and semolina intended for the plates of patients, members of hospital staff, or probably both.
The patients and staff at the Royal had not always been so well fed. The managers struggled constantly to provide patients with adequate nourishing meals from the limited budgets available to a voluntary hospital. In 1891 Glasgow newspapers reported the deep discontent of nursing staff with the inadequate and poor-quality food provided for them and the excessively long hours they had to work: the North British Daily Mail commented sarcastically that "it is surely not necessary to kill the nurses in order to cure the patients."
Reference: RCPSG 28/31
Reproduced with the permission of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow
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