Illustration by Sophie Herxheimer
During research for the Galkoff’s and Secret Life of Pembroke Place project, our volunteer team uncovered the story of Edith Rose. In 1910 she appears in a street directory at nearby Daulby Street, running the National Vigilance Association.
Edith was a historical equivalent to a social worker, a travelling secretary of the National Vigilance Association, a spiritual successor to the Mission for Friendless Girls. She would wait at the Pier Head or Lime Street Station to meet travelling girls and ensure their safe onward passage through Liverpool. She also spent time travelling around the UK raising funds for her association’s work.
During the First World War she was the organiser for the Liverpool Committee for Belgian Refugees. From 1914-1918 some 250,000 refugees from German occupied Belgium fled to Britain. Many ended up in the large urban centres and according to a biography from The Liverpolitan Magazine, November 1938:
"Train loads of these poor people arrived in Liverpool often on the shortest notice. The refugees had to be classified, houses and provided with maintenance. It was for this important work that Miss Rose was awarded the OBE."
This illustration of Edith is part of the Galkoff's and the Secret Life of Pembroke Place display at the Museum of Liverpool. The text on it reads:
"For decades the Port of Liverpol was a magnet for both young women looking for work and the people who wanted to exploit them. Edith Rose (OBE) who lived in Daulby St, set up the Liverpool branch of the National Vigilance Association, which aimed to protect these 'friendless' girls and set them up with genuine opportunities. She was very hands on and met girls at the Pier Head or Lime St to see them to a safer future. There were 30,000 cases that she helped of women in 'grave mortal danger' between 1910 and 1938."