Immigration to Scotland

As urbanisation (people moving to towns from the countryside) increased, new housing had to be built to meet the demand of the new workers from the countryside, as well as from Ireland, Italy and Eastern Europe.

Irish and Jewish groups often settled near to each other, more so with Catholic immigrants.

Why did they live in close proximity?

  • The Irish and Jewish people gave each other help to find housing and work.
  • A familiar culture and language helped immigrants to settle their families and find moral support.
  • The Irish native language was Gaelic and many could not speak English. They settled together as these were often the only people they could communicate with.
  • Jewish people were often fleeing from violence and would have felt more secure in large numbers.
  • A celebration of Irish culture was prominent in the Irish communities. This included song, dance, food and stories from home.