Ukraine conflict: Sandbags sent from Falkirk to Kyiv to protect monuments

Thousands of sandbags from Falkirk are on their way to Ukraine to help protect monuments and statues.

Thursday, 7th April 2022, 11:50 am

Over 3000 bags had been transported to Edinburgh Airport to board a flight to Krakow.

After flying out as the personal luggage allowance of an Easyjet pilot, they are now on their way to Kyiv by train.

The mercy mission came after an appeal to the City of Edinburgh from its twin city of Kyiv where officials were keen to do what they could to erect sand barricades to preserve historic monuments, memorials and statues for future generations.

Sandbags from Falkirk arrive in Krakow to be sent to Ukraine to protect monuments

The sandbags were all donated by Falkirk Council and coordinated with staffing support from Natwest.

Thanks to the rapid response, close working between 11 organisations - and a large amount of imagination - the assistance has been delivered less than two weeks after the request came in.

Dorothy Reid, Roads and Grounds Manager for Falkirk Council, said: “It was a very straight forward request that we knew could help the aid operation in Ukraine. There’s already a massive humanitarian effort going on however, this seemed something that was a bit different, and we were really happy to offer a hand with.

"We hope that some of the city’s historic landmarks can be protected with the sandbags and our small donation helps Kyiv and its citizens maintain its cultural identity.”

Thanking everyone involved, Edinburgh’s Lord Provost Frank Ross said: “I’m delighted we were able to answer our twin city Kyiv’s call for help so quickly and that the sandbags will soon be put to good use protecting their treasured monuments and, with that, their history. The coordination and delivery involved in turning this around has required a real ‘can do’ attitude and a true team effort between all of the organisations involved. They each deserve great credit for their ingenuity and input.”

“This is typical of the response since the invasion began a month ago, which has seen a characteristically caring and generous response from the people and organisations from across Edinburgh, with many coming forward with offers of help and donations. As people flee the war and choose to seek refuge here, our teams will continue to work around the clock to welcome families with open arms and make sure they receive the safety and support they need.”