Polish Medical School historical collection


The Collection contains many medals of medical interest, sculptures, paintings, photographs and books about the School, and other artefacts.

Collection when located in Erskine Medical Library

The driving force behind the idea of establishing a Collection and the initiator was the late Dr Wiktor Tomaszewski, former member of staff at the Polish School of Medicine and a well loved Edinburgh general medical practitioner and senior member of the Polish community in Edinburgh.

The Collection was established in 1986, on the 45th anniversary of the founding of the Polish School of Medicine at the University of Edinburgh and was originally located in the lower ground floor seminar room in the Erskine Medical Library in George Square shown in the image on the right.

Developed from gifts to the university, others given by the alumni and former staff and Polish Medical Academies, and personal gifts - given by Dr Tomaszewski and others. There are some fine examples of work by leading Polish artists, including medal designers and sculptors.

1991 opening of collection

Opening of collection in 2001

The Collection was formally opened in May 1991 by His Royal Highness Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh, Chancellor of The University of Edinburgh. The picture to the right shows Prince Philip shaking hands with the late Dr Wiktor Tomaszewski.

Although the Collection lost its ‘driving force’ on Dr Tomaszewski’s death in 1995, it continued to be looked after by Mrs Wanda Livingstone who, together with her husband, John, had assisted Dr Tomaszewski with a number of projects.

2005 relocation of collection

2005 relocation of collection

In June 2004 the Erskine Medical Library closed and it was agreed that a new home should be found for the Collection at The Chancellor’s Building with responsibility for its future care and management being undertaken by The University of Edinburgh.

It was rededicated in its new home on 5th April 2005 by her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, pictured right viewing the commemorative plaque which she had just unveiled.

In June 2006, the Boardroom at the Chancellor’s Building was designated the Polish Room, giving the graduates of the Polish School a new home in the heart of the College’s academic centre.

Dr Maria Dlugolecka-Graham MBE, the University’s Polish School of Medicine Coordinator is the current honorary curator of the Collection. If you would like to visit the collection please contact Dr Dlugolecka-Graham in advance.