As St John Scotland celebrates its 75th anniversary, this is the perfect time to reflect on how this organisation came into being, the work that is has done and that it continues to do, and the amazing people who made it all possible. Explored through archival research and oral testimony, this oral history project brings to life the personal experiences of St John Scotland’s members and volunteers who have worked tirelessly to improve lives since 1947.

Over thirty people shared their memories with us and in so doing have generated an impressive oral history archive exploring the organisation’s rich history of service. Respondents talk about their involvement in fundraising activities, and recall the many ways that St John Scotland has sought to improve lives, from opening hospitals, care homes and hospices, to supporting local charities and Scottish Mountain Rescue, to delivering St John Scotland’s own volunteer-led services such as CPR training and Patient Transport. Understated selflessness and a passion for helping others is evident throughout the testimonies, which tells its own story about the generous and determined nature of our volunteers.

Respondents also share their happiest memories of working with St John Scotland and their hopes for its future. What becomes clear from these testimonies is that St John Scotland and its volunteers are exceptionally well-placed to continue to serve the people of Scotland and beyond, and are ready to take on the challenges of the next 75 years.