The magazine for former pupils and friends of Glasgow Academy and Westbourne School
Bartlettâ€™s brilliant Bronze!
Laura and the girls celebrate
Reithian values In 2004 Time magazine named Niall Ferguson one of the 100 most influential people in the world. He is pretty much universally acknowledged as one of the world’s most able thinkers and debaters – something I discovered earlier than most when (a brand new teacher at Glasgow Academy) I found him sitting in the front row of my A Level English class! I learned a lot that year… It was particularly appropriate that Niall should have been chosen as the BBC Reith Lecturer, 2012 – and not just because of his intellect and his influence. The Reith Lectures are named after Lord Reith – the first Governor-General of the BBC – and, as most readers of this magazine will know, John Reith was a former pupil of Glasgow Academy – something to which Professor Ferguson alluded when he acknowledged his debt to ‘a far greater Glasgow Academical than I’. And acknowledging debts was one of the motifs of his final lecture recorded at the Royal Society of Edinburgh and the question and answer session which followed. In examining institutions whose primary purpose is to preserve and transmit particular knowledge and values, his attention turned inevitably to schools – and to independent schools in particular. He knew he was being controversial when he said, ‘In my opinion, the best institutions in the British Isles today are the independent schools.’ One of the questioners in the audience was fellow historian and fellow Academical, Professor Colin Kidd – and Niall couldn’t resist pointing out that he, too, was a fugitive from ‘70s state comprehensive education. ‘Before you start taking sideswipes at private education, before you complacently tell yourself that everything is absolutely great about the state sector in Scotland, the reason that Colin and I had successful academic careers was that our parents got us out of the failing state schools – and they were failing state schools in Ayr in the 1970s, trust me. ‘You know that’s been the key to my life, and you may find that politically incorrect, but I can tell you that there are a whole bunch of people who have had as much intelligence, probably more than me – not as much as Colin – but there are kids out there who have not had the advantage of a decent education. And because of the failure of the public school central state model, will never have the opportunities that he and I enjoyed to study at great universities, to write books, to develop our minds…’ His argument wasn’t about elitism but about diversity – about how each sector can benefit from the challenge posed by all the others. I would encourage you to listen to the programme on the BBC i-Player. If you don’t possess a computer, you’ll find an excerpt on page 4 of this magazine. Given that two such eminent historians started learning history at Glasgow Academy, one can’t help wondering which of our current crop of pupils might be giving the Reith Lecture of 2042… Whether there is a Reith Lecturer – or indeed a Lord Reith – among us only time will tell.
Colebrooke Street – the way of the future
Reith Lectures 2012
11 Events and get-togethers 12 My father, Mike Page 13 The reluctant Apprentice 14 A Bed’s Eye View by Andrew Wylie
A wonderful moment
15 Academical Club 18 Changes at The Glasgow Academy 1992 to 2012 19 Westbourne 25 Updates 27 Family announcements 28 Obituaries 31 Picture Post
Do we have your e-mail address? It’s how we communicate best!
Keeping in touch The External Relations office is situated in Colebrooke Terrace. Former pupils are always welcome to pop in for a chat and look round the school. Just give us a call to arrange a time. Our address is Colebrooke Terrace, Glasgow G12 8HE and you can contact us on 0141 342 5494 or at firstname.lastname@example.org The Glasgow Academical Club 21 Helensburgh Drive, Glasgow G13 1RR President – Iain Jarvie E-mail – email@example.com Secretary – Kenneth Shand Tel: 0141 248 5011 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org The Academical Club pavilion is available for functions. Academical Club’s London Section Secretary – David Hall, 20 Cadogan Place London SW1X 9SA Tel: 020 7235 9012 E-mail: email@example.com
Malcolm McNaught, Director of External Relations firstname.lastname@example.org
We would like to clarify that the Mrs Hislop mentioned in the last issue of Etcetera (Schoolboy Memories, page 10, paragraph 3) should not be confused with Miss Winnie Reid – later Mrs Hyslop – whose career was recorded in Etcetera 13 (page 19).
Colebrooke Street – the way of the future
Trusts and Foundations help The Academy needs to raise significant funding from the wider community if we are to start building in 2013. We urgently need your help in identifying trusts and foundations that may support this great project.
The Academy has moved forward with its ambitious plans for a new Science and Technology building on the site of two tenements next to the school on Colebrooke Street. An application for permission to construct a state-of-the-art, 37,000 square foot, four-storey building has now been submitted to Glasgow City Council. The building will provide 15 Science laboratories on the upper floors and a 175-seat auditorium and food and hospitality department on the ground floor. The development is the most significant since Glasgow Academy moved to Kelvinbridge in 1878 and is the key stage in completing the Rector’s 2020 Vision. In due course The Academy will launch a public appeal. With the support of our community (and subject to planning, of course), the school intends to start building next year. If you would like to learn more about this great development, please contact: Mark.Taylor@tga.org.uk / 0141 342 5494.
If you are aware of – or could assist with links to – any philanthropic organisations, whether trust, foundation or business, which could support the school with the Science and Technology development, please do get in touch as soon as possible. Mark.Taylor@tga.org.uk / 0141 342 5494
a dat e f o r yo u r d i a r i e s
The Chronicle online By the end of this month, it will be possible to read all Chronicles from the period 1940 to 1990 online. The ‘Chronicle Archive’ page will be found in the community section of the school website: www.tga.org.uk We would like to thank all those who supported the Glasgow Acadepedia project, which was part of this year’s Regular Giving appeal, for making this possible.
The Glasgow Academy Ball will be held on Saturday 22 June 2013 at the Hilton Glasgow hotel.
Tickets will include reception drinks on arrival, a fantastic three-course dinner, entertainment throughout the evening and music to dance the night away. ALL proceeds from the evening will be donated to Glasgow Academy PTA funds. Official invitations and booking forms will be sent to all parents and former pupils, in January. This event will sell out quickly, so we recommend you reserve your table(s) now. For advance booking, further information and sponsorship opportunities please contact PTA Chair, Sandie Watt, on email@example.com.
as well as in England and Wales, it would be a policy that aimed to increase significantly the number of private educational institutions and, at the same time, to establish programmes of vouchers, bursaries and scholarships to allow a substantial number of children from lower income families to attend them. Of course, this is the kind of thing that the Left reflexively denounces as elitist. Even some Conservatives, like George Walden, regard private schools as a cause of inequality – institutions so pernicious that they should be abolished. Let me explain to you why such views are utterly wrong.
Reith Lectures 2012 Professor Niall Ferguson (1981) was this year’s BBC Reith Lecturer. Below is an excerpt from his fourth and final lecture in which he argues that the dead hand of the state can stifle initiative. ‘Above this race of men stands an immense and tutelary power, which takes upon itself alone to secure their gratifications and to watch over their fate. That power is absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks, on the contrary, to keep them in perpetual childhood…’ (Quote from Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville) Tocqueville was surely right. Not technology, but the state – with its seductive promise of security from the cradle to the grave – was the real enemy of civil society. For Tocqueville, it would be fatal for ‘the government … to take the place of associations’. To see just how right that wise Frenchman was, ask yourself – how many clubs do you belong to? For my part, I count three London clubs, one in Oxford, one in New York and one in Cambridge, Massachusetts. I am a deplorably inactive member, but I pay my dues and use the sports facilities, the dining facilities and the
guest rooms several times a year. I give regularly, though not enough, to two charities. I belong to one gymnasium. I support a football club – no longer, I hasten to add, the illustrious Scottish club recently and ignominiously forced into liquidation. I am probably most active as an alumnus of the principal educational institutions I attended in my youth: The Glasgow Academy and Magdalen College, Oxford. I also regularly give time to the schools my children attend, as well as to the university where I teach. Let me explain to you why I am so partial to these independent educational institutions. Now, be warned: the view I am about to state is highly unfashionable. At a lunch held by The Guardian newspaper, I elicited gasps of horror when I uttered the following words: “In my opinion, the best institutions in the British Isles today are the independent schools”. Needless to say, those who gasped loudest had all attended such schools. If there is one educational policy I should like to see adopted in Scotland
For about a hundred years, there’s no doubt, the expansion of public education was a good thing. As Peter Lindert has pointed out, schools were the exception that proved Tocqueville’s rule, for it was the American states that led the way in setting up local taxes to fund universal and indeed compulsory schooling after 1852. With few exceptions, widening the franchise elsewhere in the world led swiftly to the adoption of similar systems. This was economically important, because the returns to universal education were very high: literate and numerate people are much more productive workers. But we need to recognise the limits of public monopolies in education, especially for societies that have long ago achieved mass literacy. The problem is that public monopoly providers of education suffer from the same problems that afflict monopoly providers of anything: quality declines because of lack of competition and the creeping power of vested producer interests. Now, I am not arguing here for private schools against state schools. I am arguing for both – because biodiversity is preferable to monopoly. A mix of public and private institutions with meaningful competition favours excellence – that is why American universities, which operate within an increasingly global competitive system, are the best in the world – 21 out of the world’s top 30. While American high schools, in a localised monopoly system, are generally rather bad. Witness the most recent scores from PISA – the Programme for International Student Assessment for mathematical attainment at age 15. Would Harvard be Harvard if it had at some point been nationalised by either the State of Massachusetts or the Federal Government? You know the answer…
A little knowledge... not such a dangerous thing!
Head for hire: Since moving from Alpine to Ski Cross this year, Pam has been on the look-out for sponsorship
I have read reports recently that the well-known Academical, Professor Niall Ferguson, has been invited to present the 2012 BBC Reith Lectures. This is considered to be a great honour and a recognition of the deliverer`s success in their chosen field and he must feel proud to have been asked. I can, however, claim a connection to Lord Reith which even Professor Ferguson can`t match (Niall Ferguson was born in 1964, the year I left the Academy), in that, I have actually met Lord Reith face to face. This historic event came about when, sometime in the mid-Fifties at the Academy, I won my year`s ‘General Knowledge’ prize, which was presented to me by the “great man” and former Academy pupil, Lord Reith. My abiding memory of him was as a grey giant of a man with hands the size of snow shovels! I remember that, as prize-giving day approached, I asked my dad just who Lord Reith was and what had he achieved since he left the Academy. On hearing that he had been Director General of the BBC, I asked my dad if he thought his lordship might know Tony Hancock, who was, at that time, my favourite radio comedian. Dad replied that, although the BBC probably paid both their salaries, he thought it most unlikely that the two would have had anything in common, as it was widely believed that Lord Reith had no sense of humour whatsoever. I was warned not to raise the question during our brief encounter! It transpired that, lifting my General Knowledge prize was to be the pinnacle of my academic career, as I never graced the prize-giving stage at the Academy again. To justify this lack of academic prowess and my inability to embrace wholeheartedly some of the more obscure offerings on the curriculum, to my parents and my teachers, I always put forward the defence that ‘it was better to know a little about a lot’ than to know ‘everything about algebra’, a mantra which I insist still holds good to this day! Jim Shearer (1964)
Olympic dreams Pam Thorburn (2003) is one determined young lady! Having worked her socks off to achieve one lifetime ambition only to see it ripped from her at the last minute, she changed tracks at the age of 25 and has started patiently to build towards the realisation of another, quite different, dream. ‘I was 10 when I decided I wanted to be a skier. All other sports including my favourite horse riding had to take a back seat when I was selected for the British Children’s Skiing Team.’ And make up her mind is exactly what Pam did. At school, she was single-minded about skiing and tended not to get too involved in hockey and other sports, something that perhaps inevitably led to her being a little bit isolated from her fellow pupils as she was often away competing. But pursuing the dream of being an Olympic downhill skier was what made it all worthwhile. It looked as if that dream was about to become a reality in 2010 when she had been picked for the GB Alpine Downhill Team. And then, a month before the Vancouver Games, something totally unexpected happened, something over which she had no control – her skiing federation went bankrupt and, along with two other teammates, she was told that they couldn’t afford to take her. ‘It was quite heart-breaking. You train for it your whole life and then…’ she says with a wry smile. Recovering both from that major disappointment and a serious shoulder injury, Pam decided to take a look around at alternatives and her eye fell on ski cross, a relatively new sport included
in the 2010 Olympics for the first time. So what is ski cross? ‘It’s like motocross on skis with lots of jumps – kickers they call them – and there’s four people going down at once with lots of elbows and bumping as you go down. The first two qualify for the next round… I just love head-to-head competition, so it seemed like the right decision for me to switch.’ The rightness of that decision was confirmed for her by the fact that she became British Ski Cross champion this March in only her third ever ski cross race. However, there was a price to pay in that she had to say goodbye to all her lucrative sponsorship deals in moving from the glamorous world of Alpine downhill to what some might see as the ‘new kid on the block’ of the skiing world. It takes a bare minimum of £35k a year just to keep her competing, so the issue of sponsorship is key. ‘I just couldn’t continue to ask my parents for help,’ she says. What keeps her driven? ‘I just keep looking forward to the next thing. It’s going to be bigger and better – and just achieving it is what keeps me focused. My plan is to be in the top 16 of the world by February 2014 – the time of the next Olympics.’ And no-one who’s met her would bet against that outcome. With the body of an athlete, the looks of a fashion model and that kind of determination, she’s the kind of prospect that businesses should be queuing up to sponsor. Pam’s website can be found at www.pamelathorburn.com
Anecdotage The Academy in the 60s… Belt up, will you! Former pupils of a certain vintage who visit The Academy often comment on the remarkable change that seems to have come over the school since their day. They encounter a bewildering number of smiling faces – and are struck by the fact that pupils and teachers nowadays actually seem to like each other! Graeme Orr looks back to a time when things were a little different… As we read of the stresses faced nowadays by schoolteachers in the classroom, it’s easy – and lazy – to reach for those rose-tinted glasses, and hark back to far-off days when your teacher was a wise, stern figure of authority. Pity today’s unfortunate teachers, faced with large unruly children who tower over their ‘masters’, thanks to a diet of beef burgers infused with growth hormone and genetically-modified corn. Perhaps a general issue of Tasers might quell the little horrors? Well, readers, back in the 60s (when I attended the Academy), the teachers commanded respect with another ‘T’-weapon: the tawse, which we knew as the belt. The classic ‘Lochgelly’ belt – they were manufactured in that small Fife town – was a formidable weapon, a strip of tough dark leather about 2 feet long x 2 inches wide x 0.2 inch thick. A further daunting feature was that (like the serpent’s tongue) the belt split at its free (striking) end into two or three thongs. These deterrent weapons were usually kept in reserve as the ultimate sanction against boisterous, cheeky youth, and a whole subculture developed around their use. The first thing to learn was how to soothe the stinging pain from anything up to ‘six of the best’, usually applied to the left (non-writing) hand. The popular remedy was to sit next to a radiator, and to clutch the metal feed-pipe, always hoping that it was cold. Alternatively – although I never saw this ruse work – the victim could draw back his hand at the last moment, in the hope that the teacher would whack his own knee. I can only recall one outstanding teacher, in more ways than one: ‘Frankie’ never had to resort to the belt. His demeanour, and recourse to withering sarcasm if
pressed, commanded respect from even the most unruly among us. Teachers adopted their own particular mumbo-jumbo around the flagellation ceremony (for such as it was – pour encourager les autres). Thus, for example, ‘Dodo’ had a light, soft, harmless belt, which left the victim smiling at the lack of pain inflicted. Rumour had it that Dodo had missed his strike once with a conventional belt, and had struck the pupil’s wrist, causing excessive pain and indeed damage to blood vessels; this had led to the Mk 2 decaffeinated model. As for ‘Baggy’, he had replaced the belt with a standard wooden ruler, borrowed from a pupil on the spur of the moment. With this modest arrangement, ‘Baggy’ would beat out a bastinado on the errant boy’s hand: Tat-tat-tat, tat-tat-tat, TAT, TAT, tat-tat-tat. There was little or no physical pain, but if the lad was humourless (like the class swot) and felt himself wrongly victimised, Baggy would smilingly explain to him, ‘Life’s never fair!’ Then there was Lachie, who had given his belt a name: he would declare in his lisping Skye burr, ‘I’ll giff you a good dothe of Annabel!’ Then there were the ‘real mental’ belters: ‘Bangers’ for one. He had arrived in our midst from (it was said) Shawlands, sporting a Mohican haircut and supporting the now defunct Third Lanark football club. Bangers’ party piece, designed to strike terror into the adolescent soul, was to put an old penny on a desk lid and belt it until it spun like a top or a mini-discus. What you didn’t want to encounter under any circumstances was the belt being wielded in anger, when the teacher had succumbed to the ‘red mist’. Wilf, McNadger… no let’s not go there. Let me draw a veil over all that, and proceed in my account to perhaps the greatest belter of them all. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you ‘Boggles’! Now, from the word Go, Boggles stood out as an odd wee fella. He was the fourth year Latin master, an Oxford graduate, most erudite in his parsing of the Latin poetry of Virgil for us (Dactyl! Spondee! Trochaic!). He also had a penchant for aids to memory – take the following mnemonic: Malo – I would rather be / Malo up an apple tree / Malo – than a naughty boy / Malo – in adversity. I suspect that Boggles would have preferred to have taught us English grammar too, judging by his taste for esoteric figures of speech. He would
exclaim, ‘Nice example of a zeugma!’ You may see an example of ‘zeugma’ (as I have) in the august pages of Chamber’s 20th Century Dictionary or indeed Fowler’s Modern English Usage, and like me be none the wiser from the examples given. That’s a thumbnail sketch of an erudite ‘old school’ teacher, but some description is also needed of Boggles the man. For a start, he was very short: five foot five in ‘old money’, thus short of 1.65m. Now, schoolboys are terrible gossips (no, really?), and it was soon noticed that Boggles had a little hole behind one ear. What might this be? Surely not a lobotomy or some form of trepanning? (some lads had fathers who were doctors). The reality was more mundane: a mastoid operation, popular in the 40s. Then there was Boggles’ predilection for code-breaking; again, it was rumoured that he must have been a WW2 spy. Bletchley Park and its activities were still secret in those days. One bright lad decided to embellish the cover of his Latin homework exercise jotter with a coded message, which was returned (errors corrected) with the comment, ‘What’s this – How’s it going, China?’ Now, although Boggles resorted to the belt, it was only the ultimate sanction. First there might be some lines; I recall being asked to write out a page of Shakespeare, so I cobbled together lines from various plays, culminating in ‘O be thou damned, inexecrable dog / To rob me of so rich a bottom here!’, adding the final sally, ‘What’s all this about the Merry Wives of Winzer, then?’ The next level of deterrence was a Warning; then came the invitation, ‘My room at 1.30’, which was his chosen time for belting. Not in front of the classmates, and the humiliation that might imply; no red mist; just a good belting to the Queensbury Rules, as amended and customised by Boggles. You guessed – inevitably I managed to over-step the mark, and received my invitation. My loyal chum Hamish cried ‘Sadist!’ and he was called up too. All I can remember of our punishment was that I was the first victim. Boggles stood on his platform, Whack! went the belt, and (trying to put on a brave face) I croaked, ‘More strength to your arm, Sir!’ Not very considerate of me: Hamish still awaited his fate. Boggles smiled back sweetly, as he took careful aim. Graeme Orr (1965)
these books was the proud responsibility of Mr Quinn (Chief Assistant to Kenny Wayne of the gym!).
Gastronomic Ghosts They say time can selectively fade the memory. The long sunny days of summer holidays eclipse the sodden ones. Fifty years on, can the same be said with regard to our school-day sustenance? I seem to recall the vast majority of boys at the Academy in the early 60s recharged their batteries via the delights of the Dining Hall (with selective and frequent assistance from the good offices of Jean and Ina in the Tuck Shop!). There was a cohort of diehard packed-lunchers in the Well and an even rarer species who lived near enough to nip home to savour domestic delights. For the rest of us, we faced the joys of the Dining Hall. I rather think we were pretty well served by the quantity and quality of plain fare that was produced on the premises. There were always three courses but no choices. We had not as yet been presented with the challenge of the vegetarian option or the regional themed menu! For those of an inquisitive nature, the day’s fare was emblazoned on a blackboard and easel which could be spied through the glass panels of the locked Dining Hall doors, by the end of morning break, thus enhancing anticipation (or not) of the wonders that lay ahead. At the forefront of the memory, however, was one particular menu which by general consensus, was the house favourite. This colossus of the culinary art appeared fairly infrequently
The legendary Jean and Ina feed the masses at break
– but always on a Thursday, when it did appear.
While the first two items speak for themselves, the dessert had acquired a legendary status. The ‘delight’ element was a two-tone jelly which was then smothered in a topping whose progenitrix by no stretch of the imagination could ever have been related to a cow! That being said, this glutinous white substance was swiftly dispensed from a vast stainless steel basin of bottomless capacity which easily served to meet the demands of every student and master. Second helpings were not unknown. The flavour lingers on in the memory but, like the Lost Chord, the chance of recreation seems on a par with locating the Holy Grail (unless, Dear Reader, you know better?). Confession is good for the soul. Those of my vintage might remember that school dinners were paid for by presenting a daily ticket (to the value of 2/6 (12.5p)) which one dispensed from a cheque book-like supply of 20 tickets. These had to be acquired at the start of the academic year – a simple arithmetical process being applied to calculate the number of books that would be required to last until the summer. The sale of
Naturally, during the course of the academic year, some lunches would be missed, pupils would be off sick or decide to avoid the Dish of the Day. The end result was a surfeit of unused lunch tickets. The process for dealing with this issue at the end of the academic year was to present the unused tickets to Mr Quinn who then dispensed unimaginable amounts of ready cash to young gentlemen on a generally restricted income. This, of course, should have resulted in an unexpected windfall for grateful parents. I can only say, however, that the turnover Jean and Ina experienced in the Tuck Shop during that final week of term would be something on a par with Harrods’ January sale! There is a certain sense of catharsis in admitting that I could surely be found among that ravenous horde who selectively pruned the annual dividend in this frenzy of indulgence. Perhaps this kindles a few guilty memories? Having neither witnessed nor experienced it, I rather think that 50 years on, the catering process in Colebrooke Street will have evolved out of all recognition. Today’s students no doubt daily enjoy a varied and bounteous selection of a healthy and enticing nature. Alas, they will be forever denied the indefinable joys of Academy Delight and Cream! Douglas Macnaughtan (1965)
The new girl… Sad as we were to bid farewell to Joanna Wallace who has gone to join her husband in Aberdeen, we are delighted to welcome our new Alumni/Events Manager, Emma Fitzpatrick. Emma joins us from the Prince’s Scottish Youth Business Trust where she has been working for the last four years in a marketing role. With no fewer than five reunions over the next four weeks, she’s off to a flying start!
William Livingstone remembers PART ONE In a very infrequent visit to Scotland around four years ago, I was shown around the Academy buildings by my cousin’s daughter, and the memories started to flood in. I recognised some of the older rooms, and everything seemed somehow so small compared to what I had remembered from so long ago. Strange what time does; it seems to warp the physical dimensions. Since that visit, I have been avidly reading every issue of Etcetera, looking for a familiar name or event. And this for someone who basically never showed any interest whatsoever in the Academy for nigh on 40 years. And so, here for the first time in print, are some of my more memorable experiences. My 11 years at the Academy were not outstanding in any way. Looking at my report sheets (I still have them all to this day!), I see that I was a mixed student. Moving constantly back and forth between ‘A’ and ‘B’ streams, I got mediocre grades. I did win a prize in Prep 4, and enjoyed for once only the Prize Giving Ceremony. So, it was no manner of a shock, when, in my final year, someone decided to take me out of my comfort zone and turned me into both a Sergeant in the CCF and a The pinnacle of William’s academic success came in Prep 4
Prefect. To this day, I have no idea how it happened. When I left the Academy in 1966 for St Andrews University, I had no idea that I was also leaving Glasgow. Three years later, armed with a BSc in Maths and Statistics, I made my way to Israel for a year’s visit. That one year has now turned into 43 and, amid unforeseen and unimaginable challenges and changes, personal and other, I have built a very different sort of life from that which I left back in Scotland. In all those years I have never come across a former Academical or even a person for whom the name Glasgow Academy rings a bell of knowing. But it turns out that the roots are still there, strong and alive.
The CCF I was an active cadet in the CCF. Had I had any gumption at the time, I would have tried to join the air or sea cadets, but as it was, I remained in greens for the duration. I vaguely remember days out in the field, firing guns and definitely, interminable parades. I also have a vague feeling that I was registered in the Signals Corps. Sundays were always ‘get ready for tomorrow’ days. Not an inconsiderable time was spent blanco-ing the webbing (why it was called ‘blanco’ I don’t have the faintest idea – the belt was a pale green; I suppose it came from the whites of the navy …???), brass-rubbing the brasses, and polishing the boots. I always needed plenty of newspapers to lay out the wet parts to dry.
Sergeant Livingstone and his fellow CCF officers
Somewhere around the age of 16 or 17 I was promoted to the exalted rank of sergeant. And I had to exchange my khaki trousers for a more suitable kilt. I am now a wee lad, but back then I was even ‘wee-er’, and the only kilt they could find in the store was too long, and it covered my knees – a disaster. And the heavy woollen socks were also too long for my short legs, thus also moving too high up. The result – a total disgrace to the tradition of kilt wearing. Notwithstanding, it did have its advantages. On a hot spring or summer’s day, standing at ease on parade was made a mite easier by a breeze cooling off certain parts of the anatomy with great effectiveness. This was known as natural air conditioning. And as a result, for the past 40 odd years I have been fending off the inevitable question: ‘What DOES a Scotsman wear under his kilt?’ CCF life really did prove to have long-lasting benefits. A short while ago, my good lady and I spent a couple of days camping in the desert beside the Dead Sea. As we looked up at the incredibly clear sky unspoilt by the lights of civilization, I clearly recognized the ‘Plough’; and I instantly remembered lugging to school one wintry day some enormous posters of the constellations which I had prepared myself at home, and was about to teach even younger cadets. For some really inexplicable reason, the Plough stands out as being one of the more important events of my cadet life. William Livingstone (1966)
The Academy I knew in the 1950s Not so many years ago, Henry Uren welcomed me as a new member to the Allander Probus Club in Milngavie. His welcome included a comment that he remembered me as one of the quieter boys at the Academy. By way of defence, I pointed out that, being the youngest in the class, it was always advisable to keep one’s head down. Even at what was quite a late stage in his life, he still had a phenomenal memory for the names of former pupils of the school and precisely when they were there. In writing out every rugby and cricket team sheet by hand you very quickly got to know who was who (even the not-so-good players!). Entering the Prep school in 1943, it was the tutelage of Miss Wilson, Miss McEwen, Miss Currie, Miss Lilburn and Miss Walker that held sway. Sadly I never had the opportunity of meeting any of these highly-influential ladies in later life. The Prep school then, was not quite the colourful place it is today. It was wartime, but the academic clock ticked on, and new male teachers eventually appeared as it was time for us to proceed into the Senior school. Some of these new teachers might be remembered for the wrong reasons, but some I did meet up with later and was able to see things with a broader perspective. Despite a lifetime fascination with chemistry and the big molecules of life, I was initially somewhat ‘scunnered’ to read in an early school report that ‘this boy has no aptitude for chemistry’. Clearly this was a novel way of stimulating interest in chemistry; I have to say it worked. In the end I suppose I chose the type of chemistry I wished to do that was relevant to modern developments, especially in biotechnology. Anyway, with a ceremonial throwing off of school caps into the River Kelvin we, and others, took flight for the wider world in 1955(now I note that pupils have no caps to throw away). For me it was St Andrews University, the alma mater of chemistry teacher Gordon Carruthers. In later life we would meet up at functions of the West of Scotland St Andrews University Graduates Association and through the University of Strathclyde Convocation. (I am afraid I never did get around to asking him about that school report!)
Braving the east winds of St Andrews also brought back memories of Wallace Orr’s art Classes. A regular subject he introduced was the Fife Fishing Villages which I still paint today. At school Wallace felt my drawing a bit too loose and scribbled. However, I did change a bit and used to meet up with him again when I was President of the Milngavie Art Club, although he could not recall his earlier criticisms. Not only did he introduce many of us to the finer points of art, he introduced a number of us to Shakespeare, as he is spoken, through the Globe Players. I have fond memories of performing in Hamlet, A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream and The Tempest. I don’t know if any of us went on to be stage professionals, but certainly the strain of saying ‘one-liners’ with proper emphasis, was clearly a good training for something, if not West-end theatre land.
Despite a lifetime fascination with chemistry and the big molecules of life, I was initially somewhat “scunnered” to read in an early school report that “this boy has no aptitude for chemistry”. Clearly this was a novel way of stimulating interest in the subject; I have to say it worked. Roy Burdon, FRSE, Emeritus Professor, University of Strathclyde Another interest of mine has always been music and this was initially stimulated by Reginald Barret-Ayers. Under his baton and myopic spectacles, I sang in the School Choir – and learnt the complex skills of ‘mime’ playing second fiddle in the school orchestra when the pieces became too fast. Besides music, sometimes Reginald Barret-Ayres was delegated to take classes in scripture, and one day, due to a rather idiosyncratic reading of the ‘good book’, he hinted that the world might come to an end fairly soon. Not surprisingly, this provoked a reluctance amongst my classmates to continue with the idea of homework. At this stage I felt that playing piano/ violin just wasn’t very ‘sexy’ and changed to the clarinet. This permitted quick access to the School Jazz Band led by
the then Rector’s son Chris Richards on trumpet. One of the band’s important gigs was to play for the dancing that followed the Annual Debates that we had with the young ladies of Park School. Sadly, Chris Richards and Park School are no longer with us, but my skills on the clarinet proved an excellent entrée into undergraduate high-life (albeit 1955) at St Andrews. In connection with debating, I am reminded that one year I failed to win a class prize in history (I did not usually win anyway). My father correctly reckoned it was of little consequence, but it is worth noting that the winner that year was Donald Dewar, who himself went on to make history in a big way as the First Minister of Scotland. We often met later on the ‘Shuttle’ to Heathrow; Donald on his way to Parliament, as Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, and myself as a delegate to the Parliamentary Scientific Liaison Committee in my role as Chairman of The Biochemical Society (UK). He was always concerned by the lack of scientific and technological expertise within Parliament and often we had earnest discussions as to how this might be corrected. Donald is gone, but scientific illiteracy still rules Westminster. These days it’s always a bit spooky walking up to the top of Buchanan Street in Glasgow, just to say ‘Good morning, not much progress’ to ‘Dan Dour’ as he was affectionately known at school. Besides having served as Chairman of The Biochemical Society (UK), I am a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and a Fellow of the Society of Biology. Since leaving St Andrews University, I have been Research Fellow at New York University Medical Centre; Professor of Microbiology at the Polytechnical University of Denmark; Professor in Biochemistry at the University of Glasgow; Governor/ Director Scottish Agricultural College; Chairman of the UK Coordinating Committee for Biotechnology; and Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee, European Federation for Biotechnology. Before retiring, I held the Chair of Molecular Biology and Chairmanship of the Department of Bioscience and Biotechnology at the University of Strathclyde. Roy Burdon (1955)
The Origins of Atholl As Atholl Preparatory School is now part of the Academy, as I was the first Atholl boy to be promoted to the Academy and as I am now old, it seems timely to place on record the interesting early history of Atholl. I was moved to write these few lines by Peter Aeberli’s interesting memory of his Atholl Days in the spring 2012 copy of Etcetera. My family moved to Milngavie in 1923 when I was 4. At that time, Milngavie although the proud and ancient burgh of Guy’s Mill, depended for education on Milngavie Public School, plus two ‘dames’ schools, Miss Robertson’s and Miss Taylor’s. I attended the former where we wrote on slates with slate pencils and stood in the corner when we were naughty, but all this was to change. In 1926 Miss Mary Grieves, a senior civil servant, was posted to Glasgow. She planned, together with her long-time companion Miss Hoare, to buy a house in Milngavie. This they brought to pass by acquiring a detached villa called Atholl Cottage, down the Glasgow Road. Miss Hoare had recently retired as head mistress of a prestigious school in England. She belonged to the famous banking family of Hoare and was a relative of Sir Samuel Hoare the then cabinet minister. At this time a lecturer in physiology called Kennedy-Fraser lived in Milngavie. He was the son of Margery Kennedy-Fraser, famous for collecting and translating Gallic folk songs. Mr Kennedy-Fraser, who had three daughters to educate, met Miss Hoare in education circles and persuaded her to start a small school in Milngavie to occupy her retirement. Thus ‘Atholl Cottage School’ was born with a target of about 25 pupils. I was part of the first intake and at the age of 8 was the oldest pupil in the school. To move from slate pencils and learning by rote to a school based on the most modern and enlightened teaching methods of the day was for me like moving from a dark cellar into the sunshine of a spring morning. I loved every moment from hearing about the Great Wall of China, Hiawatha and Minnehaha, to being encouraged to compose and write my own poetry and tell my own stories. At break time during the morning we played in the garden but when it was raining I was allowed to tell my own brand of fairy tales to the other children. I can
remember having to recite ‘King John’s Christmas’ from AA Milne’s poetry collection ‘Now We are Six’ at the Christmas concert. This was quite a long poem that took some remembering. Then there was the sport’s day. I won all the events except one because I was bigger than any other child. The one event was the high jump where I was thwarted by a long-legged girl called Maisie Couts who was the daughter of our minister. This was indeed a golden year for me. I must have been quite a bright child because I managed to conceal from Miss Hoare for nearly a year that I could not read. I now know that I was and still am dyslexic, but dyslexia had not been invented or identified in 1927. Many dyslexic children, including one of my own daughters, develop great skill in hiding their inability to read. When Miss Hoare found out to her horror and surprise that I could neither read nor spell, she took me in hand personally and a series of afternoon lessons was organised for me in the autumn of that year. But alas Miss Hoare died during the Christmas holidays of 1927 after an hysterectomy operation. I can remember crying my eyes out when I heard the dreadful news. In great sadness Miss Grieves arranged for the school to limp on with a temporary teacher and then Atholl Cottage was sold and the school was transferred to the Boys Brigade Hall under the aegis of a committee of parents. However, the personality of Miss Hoare was such an enduring memory that it inspired the committee of parents to finance and build the beginnings of Atholl Prep School at its present site on the moor between Buchanan Street and Mugdock Road. This was a splendid achievement and gave Milngavie a top class modern junior school when many small Scottish towns were still struggling with the schoolrooms and teaching methods of yesteryear. As the saying goes – the rest is history, but the name and traditions of Atholl Cottage lived on and I am sure still live on after 85 years in the Atholl of today. My extra reading classes ceased with the death of Miss Hoare, but their effect lingered on until during the summer holidays of 1928 I suddenly found myself reading a book called ‘The Tower Treasure.’ At last I could read, but it was too late for me to avoid being down graded to a class below my age when I started at the Academy in September 1928. My self-esteem as a pupil and my
scholastic performance never recovered, although I won the class prize and certificates for writing during my first two years in 2nd and 3rd English classes and was also vice-captain of my class. From then on it was somewhat downhill all the way. Nevertheless I am proud to have been the first boy whom the Atholl system prepared for the Glasgow Academy. The next two were Jim Phillips and Archie Ferrie. Miss Hoare’s great gifts of imagination and how to gain the enthralled confidence of small children should never be forgotten. Perhaps the vividness of my memories – and the ability to write about her and Atholl Cottage at the age of 92 – says it all.
Ronnie Walker (1938)
The Atholl I loved Just taking half an hour to read the latest Etcetera. Thoroughly enjoyed the piece ‘Atholl Days’ by Peter Aeberli. It was absolutely delightful to hear him talk of an Atholl from the 1950s and 60s, which was (but for a very few details, and the name of the Head Mistress) identical to the Atholl I knew from the 1980s and 90s... the paper chains, the Christmas nativity, hiding behind the big brick garage, for some reason known as ‘the shed’, the partition between the Blue Room and the Green Room, and never being quite sure whether the moor was out of bounds or not! I think it was to be honest, but it was known for the odd expedition through the bracken when we didn’t think anyone was looking! I wonder if the young teachers he described fondly from the early 60s were the same as the older ladies on the verge of retirement I loved so dearly in the late 80s? Valerie Speirs (sadly no longer with us), Dorothy Murison, Sally Windebank, or Margaret Nelson would certainly be around that vintage. The piece brought back some very fond memories, and a little tear to my eye. Atholl was (before my father and his board of directors necessarily rescued it from near financial and structural ruin in the mid-90s, and turned it into the viable school The Academy incorporated) to me as little boy absolutely enchanting and utterly unique. It was extremely pleasing to see that my experiences were shared and matched by generations before me. Thank you kindly for bringing a little smile to my face, Team Etcetera!
Murray Will (Atholl Owl 1987-1992)
Events and get-togethers Prize-giving The guest of honour and principal speaker at Prize-giving on Thursday 28 June was David Webster (1962). It was David’s first visit back to The Academy since he left school to study law at Glasgow University. The Academy was also delighted to welcome Mrs Gail Webster to the school for the day. On graduating from Glasgow, David worked briefly in accountancy before moving to London to work in corporate finance with Samuel Montagu. He then embarked on a very successful career in business. David is perhaps best known for his time at supermarket group Safeway, which he co-founded with the late James Gulliver and Sir Alistair Grant in 1987. After Safeway was sold in 2003, David became Chairman of
David Webster (1962) with the Rector and Mrs Gail Webster outside the Cargill Hall after Prize-giving
Intercontinental Hotels Group. He will retire as its Chairman at the end of this year. David had many wise – and entertaining – words of advice for the current and
Class of 1986-88 Reunion Around 40 middle-aged men turned up at Colebrooke Street on Friday 15 June for the Class of 1986-88, 25 year reunion. We were greeted by Malcolm McNaught, Gregor Anderson, Bill Robertson and Nigel Spike in The Well library and it wasn’t long before several old tales were being recounted. Many were centred on summer corps camps, days out at Mugdock moor and weekend jaunts up to Glen Etive – and the memories came flooding back. After a glass of champagne we headed over to a very fine lunch in the prep school and were addressed by Stewart McAslan, another of the few remaining 1980s staff, who reminded us what a fine record we had on the rugby field (hardly equalled since) as well as several other sporting achievements and stories. Stuart Montgomerie (second from right) proves that his school blazer still fits (well, almost!)
After lunch we set off on a tour of the school guided by a number of very confident and charming prefects. Several of the guys have children at the school but, to many of us, the expansion and upgrade of the facilities in the 25 years was nothing short of remarkable! There were a few things, however, that shocked us: the one way system around The Well not being observed, Bingo’s and Jimmy Jope’s classrooms being unrecognisable and the Cargill Hall chairs having cushions on them! But the most disturbing of all was the lack of awareness from our sixth year tour guides of their teachers’ nicknames! We congregated again for coffee, and posed for our photo, before many of the group headed over to Chimmy Chunga’s (now called Coopers) to continue the banter and a few more chaps turned up for the evening. On a more personal note, I was delighted to get some further wear from my ‘new’ blazer which my mother reluctantly bought in late 1986 for my last six or seven months at the Academy. On careful examination of some of the Prefects’ blazers they definitely don’t make them like they used to! Thanks very much to all the staff and pupils involved for making us all feel so welcome and we look forward to the next reunion when I hope we will see a
leaving pupils. His speech – and that of last year’s guest of honour, Murray Stuart (1951) – is available to read in full on the school website in the ‘Community’ section.
Diary of Events Class of 1972 Westbourne Reunion Saturday 25 August Class of 1992 Reunion Friday 7 September Class of 1972-1973 Reunion Lunch Thursday 13 September Class of 1950-1955 Reunion Friday 14 September GA 100 Careers Event Thursday 27 September 1976-1978 Reunion Friday 5 October Kelvin Foundation Lunch Thursday 11 October Gasbags Lunch Friday 26 October 2002 Reunion Friday 26 October Remembrance Service and Parade Friday 9 November The 130th Academical Club Annual Dinner Friday 9 November
few more old (as they most certainly will be by then!) faces. Stuart (Monty) Montgomerie (1986)
Mike Page remembered At the age of eleven I became a pupil at Glasgow Academy. I was terrified for the first week or so to see huge men all wearing gowns, looking extremely stern and all much alike. I thought the building itself was immense and the rector, Roydon Richards, quite awesome. Worse was to come when I realised that the Maths Master’s classroom, for pupils in One C, was in Room A next door to the Rector’s Study. The whole setup was totally alien to me and possibly to other new boys. I have no idea what Mike thought of teaching Maths to a bunch of youngsters who were, to put it mildly, not very receptive. By encouragement and humour he did succeed in instilling the basics. To this day I can remember his pronunciation of the words infiníte (not infìnìte) straight line. On OTC days, normally a Friday, he turned out in his army uniform – absolutely immaculate. During the whole year he never needed to punish a boy! The reason was quite simple: An LNER window strap sat on his desk. Nobody, to my knowledge, asked him how he acquired it.
Mr and Mrs Page sightseeing during the scholars’ trip on the Lusitania in 1938
My father, Mike Page My father, Michael Stuart Page, was a teacher at Glasgow Academy until he left in 1940 for the war. He was invited to go from The Black Watch to become a Paratrooper. In this role he fought with others in Italy, N. Africa and finally in Holland. He was amongst the first to be dropped into Arnhem in the Battle for the Bridge. He flew in on 19 September 1944 and was killed the following day. My young brother was born on 21 September. This left my mother with three children: my elder sister Gillian was 4, I was 2 and my new born baby brother, Geoffrey. My mother left Glasgow and moved to Sussex where we lived for many years before relocating to Kent. She lived until she was 93 years old and was an amazing person. My father would
have had 7 grandchildren and, so far, 9 great grandchildren. His sister is still alive but has a very poor memory. My memories of my father are minimal as I was so young when he died. I have been to see where he is buried in the military graveyard at Oosterbeek in Holland. This is an amazing place and the memories of the actions of all those young men to preserve the freedom of the Dutch is held with great respect. The cemetery is immaculate and no-one is forgotten. I would be very grateful to hear from anyone who has any memories or pictures of my father that they would be willing to share. There are so many gaps in his short life that I would love to fill in but need help to do so. If you would like to get in touch with Sue (Page) Barker about memories of her father, please email Mark.Taylor@tga.org.uk
As a master he was entitled to play Rugby for Accies and, at one time, there was a photograph of him and the other team members in the Pavilion at Anniesland. At the end of the summer term, in June 1940, he wished us all a happy holiday. Little did we realise he was never to return. Of his war record I can do no better than to quote the details from the Glasgow Academy Roll of Service 1939-45: ‘PAGE, Michael Stuart (Academy Staff 1935 – 40). 2nd Lieut, Glasgow Academy J.T.C. – Major Black Watch; Parachute Regt. 1st Airborne Div. Killed in Action at Arnhem, September, 1944. Mentioned in Despatches (twice). Home Service 1940-41; India1941-42; M.E., Italy 1942-43; Home Service 1943-44; Arnhem 1944.’ Now, many many years later, I realise he was a born leader. As the years disappear in the mist of time my thoughts go back to Mike and other Academicals who were only a year or two older than myself and who did not return. Remembrance Day becomes more and more poignant each year. Alan G. Diack (1945)
The reluctant Apprentice… silence is encouraged and they don’t tolerate chatting.’
Laura Hogg (2001) will be this year’s Dallachy Lecturer – a lecture in which she will be reflecting on business, Lord Sugar and The Apprentice. Here she talks to Malcolm McNaught about some of the things she found out through the process.
It’s clear that the producers have worked hard on the psychology of the situation so that – when they’re eventually released into the boardroom – emotions are running high. ‘By that time everyone is watching for the least wee sign of someone making a mistake – that’s gold dust. And when they do, everyone’s on to it a bit like sharks with blood.’
When the idea of applying for a place in The Apprentice was first suggested to Laura Hogg, she was surprisingly negative. ‘I had watched and enjoyed several series of the programme, but funnily enough wasn’t too keen on the job opportunity that went along with it. I thought, I’ve got my own wee empire here – why would I want to move all the way down there and work for someone else?’ Her ‘wee empire’ was a bridal shop called Laura Reece on Dumbarton Road which she had been running for a just over a year. Everything was going well, but – as every entrepreneur knows – if there’s one thing every new business could do with it’s an injection of capital to get things really moving. ‘So the shift in the process to a £250,000 investment was appealing,’ Laura continues. ‘But I was still reluctant to apply. It may sound arrogant, but I thought, “Do I have time for this?”. I thought there was a fair chance that if I applied I would be chosen to take part. I seem to have a spark or something that people recognise – I don’t know what it is… And I had already won an online version of The Apprentice called The Hirer in 2008. It was great, but time-consuming and I really didn’t want to leave my own business for that long.’ Eventually it was Jim Boslem – a family friend and her mentor with Entrepreneurial Spark, an organisation for encouraging fledgling business people – who persuaded Laura to go for it and she sent in her application. It is rumoured that some 120,000 people applied to appear in the last series of The Apprentice. No wonder that the interview process sounds brutal as the producers tried to whittle down the hopefuls into more manageable numbers. Having survived the initial,
paper-based cull, Laura was asked to make her way down south for a series of interviews and screen tests – everything from one-to-one interviews to assembling flat-pack furniture in teams of 10 under time pressure. As well as the 30-second pitch in front of the cameras, Laura realised that how you sparked off the other contestants was probably as important as anything else in the selection process. ‘I never forgot for a second that it was TV. At the end of the day it’s all about air time and what plays to an audience. In the house [where the successful candidates lived throughout the process] we had lots of time to discuss why we thought we’d been picked. One common denominator is that we’d had clashes with others during the selection process.’ While the auditions certainly don’t sound like something for the faint-hearted, the same could undoubtedly be said of the programme itself as Laura described some of what lies behind elements of the programme that will be familiar to regular viewers. Take the boardroom, for example… ‘What viewers probably don’t know is the boardroom is a full day of shooting edited down to about 20 minutes… The day began with all the candidates penned in the green room for two hours. We were with minders all the time to check that the atmosphere didn’t get too jolly. It felt a bit like being a teenager back at school at times:
And turn on her those sharks certainly did in ‘Week 8’ of the programme when her mistake was not getting into selling mode quickly enough. Surrounded by garish modern art and finding herself out of her comfort zone, it took her a while to realise that others were stealing a march on her while she chatted politely to potential customers. It was a weakness that proved fatal to her chances of being Lord Sugar’s next apprentice. The programme was a learning experience for Laura and she says she learned quite a bit about herself. ‘I didn’t realise I was as feisty as I am – especially in the boardroom.’ Perhaps that shouldn’t be too much of a surprise for someone who ‘thrives on the adrenaline of competition’. As she’ll tell you, ‘anyone in the business world is the same’. Looking back, she has no regrets about taking part in the competition – ‘After all, I’ve made some fantastic friends through the process!’ She does, however, feel that it may be time for ‘a wee shake up’ in the format. ‘I suspect the show is fundamentally flawed in that it’s all about winners and losers... It’s essentially a game show.’ But maybe that’s always going to be the case with television. Perhaps Laura’s ambivalence about the whole process is summed up in her final statement as she reflects on her experience: ‘I would love to win £250,000 – but I’m not so sure about being Lord Sugar’s business partner!’ Laura will be giving the Dallachy Lecture on Thursday 4 October at 7pm in the Cargill Hall.
STOP PRESS…STOP PRESS…STOP PRESS…STOP PRESS…STOP PRESS
A Bed’s Eye View by Andrew Wylie Andrew Wylie (1944) and I met and became friends in Transitus in 1938 – a friendship which lasted until his death last summer. We had sometimes talked, as old men will, of our mortality and, hesitantly, of any faint footprint we might leave behind. Yet of Andrew there was never any doubt that he would be well remembered, and by many at that. For, as a minister of the Church of Scotland his avowed purpose and determined vision carried him through and far beyond the boundaries of church wall and parish. His life and work became a “reaching out” to people, culminating in his time as the first Chaplain to the Offshore Oil Industry during which he was involved in the aftermath of several disasters including Piper Alpha. Of these years he left an eloquent and engaging account in his book Just Being There – With Bears and Tigers in the North Sea. But he has left another tangible legacy in a collection of prayers written over 30 years ago and conceived during long weeks in hospital after suffering a severe stroke. In recognizing that his were commonly experienced emotions, Andrew sought to share thoughts of them hoping to help the sick, their carers and those left at home to better understand a stressful situation. These short prayers, of seldom more than fifteen or sixteen lines, are immensely insightful and speak both personally and of others with compassion. They show courage in admitting fear and in the confusion of the unfamiliar, hope in weary loneliness and gratitude for companionship and care. If this sounds a tad sanctimonious, I do my friend an injustice; his words are deceptively simple but aptly profound, and, for those of doubt, may be read as elegant prose or blank verse. I guarantee they will resonate and stir latent thoughts. A warm introduction to the book is contributed by Gerald Stranraer-Mull, Dean Emeritus of the Diocese of Aberdeen and Orkney. The card cover and pleasing professional design throughout is by Andrew’s friend Michael Marshall. A Bed’s Eye View is published by Jennifer, Andrew’s widow, (as they had planned before his death) with his original hope and aim that it provide comfort to those unwell, at home or in hospital, and to those supporting them Douglas N Anderson (1944)
A wonderful moment for Laura - and for Sheila! Every picture tells a story - and it’s often an emotional one. The goal-scorer lies on the ground in a mixture of exhaustion and elation from her effort to get the ball on target. But what about the emotions of the photographer?
For Laura Bartlett - the goal-scorer - this photo taken at the London 2012 Olympics represents a career ‘high’ and a moment she’ll remember for ever. But for the photographer, Sheila Crawford - newly-retired Head of Games and Laura’s hockey coach throughout her time at Glasgow Academy - it was also a career ‘high’, something she too will never forget. Sheila describes the moment: ‘I took the photo at the Great Britain against Belgium match on Thursday 2 August. Laura - number 14 - is on the ground having just scored as you can see the yellow ball in the back of the net. I was just thrilled to be there when she scored a goal. Laura played very well throughout the tournament and I was absolutely delighted to be there with her mum and dad and Kay [her sister] and be a part of it!’ Of course, the GB hockey team went on to win the Bronze medal after beating New Zealand in their final game. Many congratulations to them, and to Laura in particular. Like Sheila Crawford, we’re all very proud of you!
From another bedside… Graham Little (staff 1965-88, aka Bingo) at 85 had vascular surgery in the Western Infirmary in June but is making a good recovery. In a window bed at level 9, he amused himself describing the view in 52 lines of doggerel, from which the following is an extract. If you have any interest in the total description, it is available by e-mail from the Ex Rel office. Graham sends his greetings to all who remember him. The photo shows him at Hoxa Head, Orkney, on a recent visit to son Stuart (1976), who is Special Needs Dentist for Orkney.
The Riverside Museum’s scarcely seen And just a patch of Clyde’s now quiet stream, Where once plied mighty vessels from afar; But ‘Glenlee’s’ prow and mast are visible. Beyond it Govan Old Town Hall, some space, Then the Old Church where George MacLeod held sway And saw the plight of Govan’s unemployed So took them to find dignity in work Rebuilding old Iona’s Abbey church That welcomes all who travel out that way. Behind the masts of ‘Glenlee’ stand Moss Heights, A pre-war housing scheme, refurbished now, To house a new Mosspark community. The line of cranes betrays the River Clyde. Are those white towers Thales Optical? (Successors to the famous Barr and Stroud Whose lenses used to gain world-wide acclaim).
Academical Club Rugby Section
President’s welcome… Having enjoyed membership of the Glasgow Academical Club for many years, I was both excited and honoured to be appointed as President at the AGM on 12 June. As we build towards our 150th Anniversary in 2015, the Club is in good shape, with first class facilities at New Anniesland (including the new Gordon Mackay Bar), thriving sports sections, and a full social agenda. In my year of office my priorities are: Supporting the Sports Club’s growth as a place where our youth can achieve their ambitions and build life-long friendships Further strengthening the Club through broader engagement with the wider Academical community Improving the Club’s financial footing through increased usage of clubhouse for social functions, additional sponsorship, and embedding the Academical Club Lottery introduced last year The cornerstones in achieving success are the continued great work undertaken by members, and the Club’s close partnership with the school. Whether you are a long-standing member or have just joined, I look forward to meeting up with you at some point during my year in office, and, should you wish to speak with me regarding any aspect of Club life, please just give me a call or drop me a line. Iain Jarvie (1972) President
It’s full steam ahead at this time of the year to prepare for next season. The 1st and 2nd XV finished in fourth place respectively last year and with the league restructure we will have some challenging fixtures ahead. We are delighted to welcome head coach Davey Wilson and his No 2 Ally Craig who are both joining our player/coach Elliott Mclaren to form a new-look team at the helm. Davey brings with him a heap of coaching and playing experience to Accies and we are very fortunate to have his services. At the same time we wish last season’s coach, Ewan Smith, all the best with his return to West. There has been a lot going in behind the scenes and we are delighted with the influx of new ‘young’ committee members who have already made a real impact to the section in general admin, rugby, sponsorship, and social events. Stu Smith, Elliott Mclaren, Alan Wilson, Iain Williamson and Ross Chassels are all committing their time to the Club. Their enthusiasm and focus will be an enormous help to our success this coming season. Plans are afoot to revamp the website in line with the creation of a main Club site which will allow us to communicate much better. Please keep checking the web site for news and events. Congratulations to Andy Brown and his youthful Sevens side who won the Oban tournament in May. We are indebted to our new main sponsor this year, law practice Miller Beckett & Jackson, together with Mearns Golf Academy, Gibson Investments, John Watson Printers, and Zoti Sports. We are also very grateful to our individual sponsors, however small: every bit counts to the running of the section. We look forward to seeing you out at New Anniesland and please check the website for all the action. Gavin Smith (Chairman)
The Gordon Mackay (‘69-‘08) Memorial Match On Friday 24 August The Glasgow Academical Club will be hosting a memorial rugby match to celebrate the life and playing career of Accies legend, Gordon (Schnozz) Mackay. The Club, together with friends, former team-mates and colleagues – in the form of Craig Chalmers and other legends – have come together to organise a special fixture to pay tribute to Gordon and officially open our refurbished bar facilities named in Gordon’s honour and to celebrate the sporting prowess of past, present and future Glasgow Accies. Gordon wasn’t just a committed Accie, he was one of the game’s true gentlemen. Hard, yes; uncompromising on the pitch, yes. But a truer gentleman in the clubhouse you could not ever wish to meet. Seasoned veterans together with a sprinkling of youth will take the field to honour Gordon, and celebrate his career and contribution to the game we all love. I hope you can join us for an evening to remember! The evening festivities will include some entertaining rugby with some guest appearances, music, a raffle, commentary by John Beattie and an opportunity to raise some money for charity; The Wooden Spoon and The Preshal Trust. Gates open at 1800 and the match will Kick Off at 1830. Tickets are available through the Rugby Section or pay on the night. More information will be available on the club website, www. glasgowacciesrfc.com The cost of tickets is: Adult £10 and U16 free. We hope as many family and friends of Gordon and the Club come along and join us for an evening to remember.
After an exciting period of redevelopment over the past few seasons, the gents’ hockey section is continuing to go from strength to strength. We are currently fielding 1st and 2nd XIs in the West District Divisions and both teams finished mid-table with a number of new players welcomed from the school. We presently have 28 members, though are looking to increase our numbers.
The London Section continues to thrive, with a steady flow of new arrivals making contact and enrolling in the London Section.
anniversary of a group of Academicals meeting in the Trocadero Restaurant in 1913. The Academicals present 100 years ago were the following:
At the time of writing, the London Section will be entertaining the School Shooting Team during their annual visit to Bisley. This event is organised by Crawford Alexander and Henry Watson and includes a Veterans’ Match, with a number of Accies participating. We look forward to hosting the School Team and to hearing of their experiences, both at Bisley and throughout the shooting season.
Lieutenant-General Sir J. M. Grierson KCB Lieutenant-General Sir Archibald Hunter Sir William Ramsay Mr Hector Morrison MP Professor Lyde Professor WP Ker Mr Alexander Sinclair Mr John Knox Mr Thomson Ackman Mr JB Readman Mr Andrew Cunningham Mr J M’Gregor Forbes Mr John King Captain Bremner Colonel Peterkin Mr T Macwhirter Mr RW Ord Mr J Campbell Murray Mr RA Mitchie
Scotland coach, Adam Bain, continues to coach the boys on a Monday night (7 – 9pm). He brings a wealth of experience and truly expert tuition to the squads. Off the pitch, we increased our number of SHU qualified umpires and eighteen of the (predominantly) younger guys also passed their umpiring theory test. The section members all enjoy increased involvement with the ladies’ hockey and the rugby sections, which is due, in part, to the more relaxed summer mixed hockey. We are always on the lookout for new players, young or old and regardless of experience. Schoolboys, Academicals and non-Academicals alike are invited to visit our website (www.glasgowhockey.co.uk) which provides members and visitors with information about games, training, social events and international hockey news.
The London Section was represented at the London Scottish Schools’ Golf Day at Denham Golf Club on 21 June and we emerged in second place – a fine performance by our team. We might have improved on our position had we fielded some more players. To all golfers in the London Section, please make yourself available next June. The London Section Committee has started planning the celebrations for the Centenary of the London Section. A Gala dinner will be held at The Caledonian Club in London on Friday 1 February, 2013 and we hope it will be well supported to mark the 100th
firstname.lastname@example.org, or 07803 855394
As always, if any Accie is planning to move to or near to London, do get in touch with the London Section on 020 7235 9012 or at email@example.com David W Hall (1961) Secretary / Treasurer
Stuart Ward (1998) GAMHC Club Captain
With Kenneth Shand standing down from his position as Academical Club Secretary, and Neil Maclean standing down as Accies’ Subscription Secretary, the Club is seeking volunteers to take over. If you might be interested in either position, and want more information, please contact Iain Jarvie.
If there are any readers who recognise or are relatives of these Academicals, please contact me (details below).
Colin Manson (1970) and George Ritchie (1956) check that their names are still on the JW Hardy Trophy at the lunch to celebrate 100 years of the senior tennis competition at Glasgow Academy
Accies’ Dinner – Friday 9 November, 2012 This year, guest speaker Kevin Simpson – who represented Team GB at the Paralympics in wheelchair tennis in Beijing – will share his Olympic experiences with us all. Well-known singer and broadcaster Fiona Kennedy will also entertain us on the night. It looks set to be a great evening and we hope to see you there. To reserve your table or tickets now, please email: Emma. Fitzpatrick@tga.org.uk
Sporting Academicals in Shanghai – Past and Present Fred Anderson (1868) It is widely accepted that Glasgow Academy has produced many international exponents of the ‘rugby’ code but in recent times we are becoming aware that they also produced several who played with distinction under the ‘association’ rules. One exponent of the round ball game was Frederick Anderson (Class of 1868) who was a Scottish international football cap. He played as a forward for Clydesdale,
and Queen’s Park and represented Scotland in the 1874 match against England at Hamilton Crescent. Anderson scored Scotland’s first goal in a 2–1 win the first time Scotland recorded a win over England on home soil. He also played in the first ever Scottish Cup Final, which his Clydesdale team lost 2–0 to his former club, Queen’s Park. In October 1874 there is a note in Bell’s Life stating that he had
left Clydesdale to go and work in Manchester. After this he seems to have made his way to Shanghai and helped spread the football gospel, as did many Scots. Bizarrely, a Shanghai team was once a member of the Scottish FA and it appeared in the SFA handbook of 1890. Anderson later became Chairman, Municipal Council, Shanghai International Settlement, 1905-06. Hugh Barrow (1962)
Academicals Reinvigorate the Shanghai Scottish Sports Club Sports Club. Within a week twenty Scottish sporting enthusiasts had been rounded up, including former Academy captain Bryan Thomson (1981) and former Academical rugby player David Moore (1996/7). A challenge was promptly issued to the English to restart the Prentice-Skottowe Cup after a break of 71 years.
From the mid-nineteenth century until the Second World War, both Scots and Academicals played a prominent role in Shanghai’s commercial, political, social and cultural life. Foremost amongst them was Frederick Anderson (1868), as noted above. Following the Opium Wars in China, the various foreign concessions were established in Shanghai from the 1840s onwards and slowly the expatriate community started to introduce their favoured sports to the city with cricket, rowing and baseball leading the way – followed soon thereafter by football in both codes. The Shanghai Scottish Sports team was set up in 1867 and the following year they played their first match against the Shanghai English by recording a resounding victory in cricket. In 1908 a Scottish shipbuilder called John Prentice together with a Manx trader called E.B.Skottowe donated the Prentice-Skottowe International Football Cup, which was
Academicals in Shanghai (l to r) Alan Jope (1981), Ainsley Mann (1983), David Moore (GAC 1996/96) and Bryan Thomson (1981)
to become an annual event played until 1941. It always involved the Scottish, Irish and English communities and in subsequent years the Portuguese and Chinese also took part. The complexion of the modern day international community in Shanghai is vastly different from the early years. Nowadays Scots are thin on the ground, so it was perhaps no surprise the Shanghai Scottish Sports Club (SSSC) did not re-emerge after foreigners started coming back to Shanghai at the advent of Deng Xiao Peng’s “Open Door” policy in the late 1970s. However, when the Shanghai Rugby Football Club’s (SRFC) historian spoke last year about the Scottish sporting history to one of the SRFC Directors, Ainsley Mann (1983), Ainsley made a quick call to Alan Jope (1981) and they immediately decided to reform the Shanghai Scottish
The Scottish team turned out in full replica 1920’s Shanghai Scottish strips and period blazers. Predictably the English went for their 1966 World Cup replica strips. Despite having at least two ex-professional English Championship players in their team, the English were overwhelmed by the Scots in the first half going into the break 3-1 down. The Scottish team, whose average age was 42 years, tired badly in the second half and went into meltdown in a flurry of yellow cards, one red card and two penalties as the English racked up 5 goals. Mann and Thomson will always claim that it was their half time substitution that was partly to blame for the Scottish team losing their way. However, the competition did not stop at the final whistle. In the clubhouse the Scots dominated the post-match activities and then kidnapped the English captain who disappeared with the Scottish team to their base deep within Shanghai’s former French Concession. What happened subsequently was never recorded but it’s safe to assume the English captain may have second thoughts about wishing to lead his team to victory next year. Any Academical wishing to get in touch with the SSSC can do so via the Scots in Shanghai Linkedin page or via: exrel@ tga.org.uk Ainsley Mann (1983)
Changes at The Glasgow Academy: 1992 to 2012 correct order. In those days, of course, all female members of staff wore skirts: when I commented on the inadvisability of wearing skirts in a lab, I was told that ‘ladies’ do not wear trousers! I took Temple House over from Nigel Spike in 1992 and was the first female House Teacher in the history of the Academy; an interesting position to be in, but one I very much enjoyed. All the excellent Temple House Captains and Sixth Years helped make the post exciting and it was with regret that I handed it on to Andrew Lyall when Charles retired and I was appointed Head of Chemistry in 2000. During those years we introduced House Debating and, under the able leadership of Mr Michael Atkinson, Temple enjoyed much success.
I came to Colebrooke Street when The Academy merged with Westbourne School for Girls. The merger took place in 1991, but as a Sixth Form tutor, I stayed at Winton Drive until the building closed so I started teaching in Lab C1 in August 1992. The Chemistry labs were refurbished in the summer of 1992 and I had the opportunity to design the lab I wanted: this is one of the many reasons it has been such a pleasure to teach in C1 for the past twenty years. Charles Mylne was Head of Chemistry in those days. Charles was a lovely, very cultured man who used to do The Times crossword in the SCR each lunch-time with Nigel Spike and Jim Haine, with the occasional assistance of John Anthony. Those were the days when individual seats in the SCR were jealously guarded and when the whole staff, many in gowns, processed into the Cargill Hall to take their places in the front three rows for morning assembly. Dr Bill Morris, Minister of Glasgow Cathedral and the then School Chaplain, would give erudite and fascinating talks to the assembled masses on a remarkably wide range of subjects including religion, morality and ethics. The staff also processed into the Cathedral for the Commemoration Service each year: this procession was in strict order of seniority and it was interesting (and fun) to watch the polite, but vicious spats which occurred when staff disagreed on the
‘Over the past twenty years, The Academy has changed in many ways, but what has not changed are the pupils: they are as varied, fascinating and wonderful as they have always been.’ I was responsible for lighting the school’s plays at Westbourne and carried on the task, working with Gregor Anderson, when we moved to Colebrooke Street. Jim Haine put on some spectacular shows: those of a certain age will remember the moonwalk in Pirates of Penzance and the stunning performance of Darius Danesh as Fagin in Jim’s production of Oliver! The most memorable, however, was Joseph and the Technicolour Dreamcoat. This was the first after the merger and the sight of one of the lovely young Westbourne ladies playing Salome and dancing across the Cargill Hall stage with a flashing jewel (picked out by the lights) in her naked belly-button, caused something of a stir in the SLT, who were seated in the front row. One of the abiding memories of those early days was walking across from the main building to Biology and confiscating the heavy leather footballs which made the transit as dangerous as any front line. In those days the Terrace was lined with parked cars and the back playground (now a car park) was the S5/6 football pitch: loud were the pupils’ complaints when that change was instigated.
In 1992 personal computers were just being introduced. There was a small computing room (where school bags are now stored, next to the CCF office) which held 4 or 5 Macs for staff use. The school ‘platform’ was then Apple Mac and they were fairly intuitive machines; unlike the present PCs. A boy, who was in the first Higher class I taught at The Academy, impressed me greatly when he produced a (floppy) disk containing a copy of Chemdraw (very new software for drawing molecular structures) which he’d obtained from the MIT site: the internet was in its infancy so I accepted the disk and did not question the provenance. These were days of manual registers, hand-written reports, no e-mails, no smart phones and no Twitter; how did we survive? Legend has it that there are three certainties in life; death, taxes and change. Over the past twenty years, The Academy has changed in many ways, but what has not changed are the pupils: they are as varied, fascinating and wonderful as they have always been. It has been a privilege to teach so many talented individuals; not necessarily talented in terms of chemistry, just talented in general. All children want to do well and want to please both their parents and their teachers, but, sometimes, they develop a feeling of random anxiety and convince themselves they cannot do a particular subject. That is when teaching becomes interesting and it is a challenge to find a way to explain the topic or idea so that they understand. They need to meet small successes along the way; these build into larger successes and end in the excellent examination results for which The Academy is famous. Teaching very bright children is also a pleasure and a big change in TGA is the way in which we have opened out and become more involved in the wider community often by entering various competitions. Supervising the Chemistry Team (who teach themselves in preparation for the annual RSC schools quiz) has been an enormous pleasure over the past ten years and I have learned a lot from these innovative and exceptional young people. Change always happens, but TGA continues to be an exciting, imaginative and first-class environment in which to learn and to teach. Fran Macdonald
Westbourne Grand Reunion The date, Saturday May 19 2012, had been in my diary – and the diaries of scores of other former Westbourne girls – for weeks. Now that great day had arrived, the day of The Westbourne Grand Reunion Dinner. This was, in fact, the second Grand Reunion. I had been unable to attend the first in October 2009, as I was undergoing treatment (very successfully) for cancer at the time so had been determined to be at the next Reunion. Everything about this second reunion promised to be grand. Even the venue was highly apt, the Grand Ballroom of the Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow. Not only that, but the recently published book Glasgow’s Grand Central Hotel: Glasgow’s Most-loved Hotel has been co-written by a Westbourne girl, Jill Scott (Jill Kinniburgh 1973). Oddly enough, as the clock ticked down to the evening’s celebrations I became apprehensive. Would I know anyone? Now an OAP, perhaps the others attending would all be youngsters in their 20s, 30s, 40s. Was I wearing the right attire? Perhaps it would be more appropriate if I wore my lilac outfit. Then it happened. Tossing all my concerns aside I was on my way, boarding a train at Anniesland and
heading for the city centre. After a few minutes the young lady sitting beside me began chatting. ‘Excuse me,’ she said, ‘are you, by any chance, going to a reunion?’ My jaw dropped. We were two former Westbourne girls together – although my travelling companion was at least half my age and had travelled from London to attend. It seems you can take the girls away from Westbourne but we remain Westbourne girls for ever. Together we made our way through the Central Station concourse and into the hotel to be welcomed by the music of piper Iona Brodie. Even before we made our way up the grand staircase and picked up our name tags, kindly organised by Iona’s mother, Marion Willies (1980), we were meeting up with old friends. As I made my way into the heart of the pre-dinner drinks reception in the Grand Ballroom foyer – a reception sponsored by the Glasgow Academical Club – I kept meeting up with more friends. Every time I turned my head more and more familiar faces came into view. Before I had had a chance to say all my hellos, we were on our way into dinner within the Grand Ballroom which, by chance, is decorated in Westbourne colours.
Our table places had been arranged in a school leaving year system and I took my place at table four for the 1960-63 leavers. Carol Fyfe (1981) gave the welcome speech. Dinner was a great credit to the hotel – although the wonderful company added to the sense of occasion. As well as reflecting on times past and various milestones in the years since our school days ended, there was a chance to catch up on current school news with Miss Henderson, in her speech at the dinner, paying tribute to Mrs Crawford, PE, and Mrs Macdonald, Chemistry, who both retire at the end of the session. All too soon dinner was over. The evening had lived up to its Grand title. We were homeward bound. Old friendships had been rekindled. New friendships had been made. The Westbourne ties were stronger than ever. The Westbourne motto Nihil Sine Labore (Nothing Without Work) clearly remains a guide for us all. A great deal of hard work and good organisation had obviously been undertaken to ensure the Reunion was an occasion to remember. Now for the next Westbourne Grand Reunion which is already scheduled for 2017. I have it in my diary already. Heather Rose (1962), (Mrs Malcolm McDougall), is property features writer with the Scottish Daily Express.
And the champagne goes to… For weeks I have been meaning to send you details of the names of the pupils featured in the photograph submitted by Sheila Robertson on page 23 of the spring issue of Etcetera. I’m not 100% sure but suspect that the photograph must have been taken at least 55 years ago! Sheilagh MacGregor
Memories of Westbourne Back row (l to r): Sandra Spence; Jean Rankin; Celia Fairley; Judy King; Susan Go(o)dwin; Patricia Hardie; Catherine McNarry Middle row: Helen MacKechnie; Kareen Russell; Fiona Robertson; Lorna Adam(s); Elizabeth Kinniburgh; Donella McGowan; Hilda Murchie Bottom row: Valerie Young; Sheilagh MacGregor (me!); Shereen Hassan; Wendy Barrass; Carol Sutherland; Jennifer Orr; Sheila Robertson
I started Westbourne in 1945. In these days the school was in Kelvinside House and fairly small. There were tennis courts, a rose garden and lots of bushes to play in at recess. I remember one lovely sunny day when Miss Cousland taught our class in the garden. We all sat on the bank. There were twelve of us in the sixth form when we left in 1956. I went into training at the Western Infirmary and graduated in 1960. I came to Canada in 1963 where I met my husband who was in the Canadian Military. We have one daughter who has given us three lovely grandsons. We are retired in Chester, Nova Scotia, and spend our winters in Melbourne Beach, where we play a lot of golf.
[We leave it to Sheila Robertson to decide whether the names above are accurate – and, if satisfied, to award that prize she so generously offered. Ed]
Janette (Robertson) Sauvageau (1956) Westbourne in 1966 to take up her post as Head Teacher at Atholl School in Milngavie, where she remained until her retiral in 1980. Outside of school, Miss Macnair was a keen tennis player and golfer. She was an active member of the Western Tennis Club in Hyndland until well into her seventies and President of the West of Scotland LTA in 1973. A Soroptomist, she was President of the Glasgow West Club in 1975/76. A long-standing member and Elder at Hyndland Parish Church, she was celebrated for her marmalade making! She also had a particular interest in the David Gordon Memorial Hospital in Malawi.
Obituary Miss Rachel Macnair – 1919-2012 In spite of the passage of time, I can still remember being a six-year-old pupil in Miss Macnair’s 1b class, during the session 1948/49.
Born in 1919, the youngest of four sisters, she lived in Sydenham Road in Glasgow’s West End in what was the family home for over 100 years.
Rachel Macnair was a gifted teacher, with high moral and scholastic standards. These qualities, combined with an obvious love of children, proved invaluable when guiding pupils of such an impressionable age.
Miss Macnair held teaching posts in the West End and the USA before joining the staff of Westbourne in 1947 where she remained for 19 years, as Form Mistress of 1b and latterly as Joint Head of the Junior School. She left
In both her professional and private lives, Rachel Macnair was a person of considerable stature who will be remembered by the generations of children who benefited from her dedication DB [We would like to thank Miss Macnair’s nephew for his help in giving us details of his aunt’s many interests outwith her life in education.]
Westbourne Updates Alison Bruce
Alison (Kennedy) Bruce (1961) High-achieving individuals from across a range of industries and disciplines received honorary degrees from the University of Glasgow earlier this summer. On 13 June, Doctor of the University honours were awarded to Alison Bruce (Westbourne 1961), in recognition of her service as the University of Glasgow’s lay representative at the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.
Anne Graham (1972) I have been involved with an International Project called the HND Niessing Project which I established with my then Head of School of Art and Design, David Hempstead. We select six students to take on a staff/ student workshop to work with some of Germany’s top designers. A competition brief is set and a panel of distinguished judges set up. Ten students are short listed and give a presentation to the judges. Out of these six are normally selected, but we took seven this year. It’s a demanding but exciting project. There is no avenue for funding as we do not slip into the correct category for this. However, I personally raise money from businesses and my own contacts. In return, these companies are listed at our exhibitions and also we have web links on the Cardonald College
site. (I am Senior Lecturer, Jewellery, Cardonald College.) Any funding is appreciated. The students also have sales giving 20% of their proceeds to the Jewellery Project Fund and also have a raffle before their trip to raise money.
Noreen Greig (1955) I would like to share something wonderful with my dear friends from Westbourne, year of 1955. Anyway, the news is that I got married in February 2012 to a wonderful man called Joe Slater whom I first met in 1967, the year I emigrated to Canada. Having lived alone for 22 years I am so very happy and still have to pinch myself sometimes to ensure it is not all a dream! By the way I have retained my maiden name – Greig.
Pictured are (l to r): Rosemary Faille Wallace (International co-ordinator at St Margaret´s British School, Chile); me! Barbara Mavor; Iain Hardy and Carolyn Pettersen Cave (Principal of St Margaret’s)
Barbara Mavor (1970) While on a visit to Chile, I attended a reception for the Queen´s birthday at the Club Viña, hosted by the Honorary British Consul, Iain Hardy.
Rosie Wallace (1972) Just thought I would let you know that my second novel, The Trouble With Keeping Mum was published in hardback on 2 August 2012 by Hachette Scotland. Paperback expected in December 2012.
We are living in Victoria, British Columbia, same address I have had for 12 years now.
Victoria (Lumsden) MacLeod (1994) On my report card in 1992, Mrs Crawford wrote about me: ‘If Miss Lumsden put as much effort into doing PE as she did in trying to get out of it, she’d be a very fit young lady.’ She was absolutely correct! My daughter is in Prep 1 at Atholl and has PE with Miss McNeill who wrote on her latest report that Tilly is a pleasure to teach. Thankfully, Tilly got some of her father’s genes.
Birth Gail (McNeill) Johnston (1993) To Andrew and Gail in Aberdeen, on 11 July 2012, a daughter, Katherine Amy.
Correspondence course! It is 60 years since I started to correspond with a French pen friend whose name was given to me by our French teacher (Miss Macdonald) at Westbourne in 1953. Suzanne still lives in Clermont Ferrand and we are STILL corresponding... she in French and me in English nowadays. We have shared our joys and sorrows over these years and – when we were medical students – we exchanged exam papers. I specialised in Paediatrics and she in Psychiatry. We discuss the state of the Health services in France and UK... some things better, some worse. Hopefully in the autumn I can travel to France to see her as we have NEVER MET. Once she came to Glasgow with relatives while I was away trekking in Nepal. Once when I was en route for the Pyrenees she was on holiday in Greece. I was encouraged by Martine (nee Mitchell) at our recent Westbourne Reunion to visit my pen pal. We are both in our 70s so we had better meet soon!!!!
Fiona Kennedy’s The Kist Seven Academy pupils featured in an STV charity event to promote The Kist at Oran Mor on 30 May. The pupils were given the opportunity to form the chorus and appear on stage with the show’s well-known star and producer, Fiona Kennedy (1973), a former pupil of Westbourne School for Girls. The Academy pupils who took part are pictured with Fiona and special guest on the night Alan Cumming: (l to r) Douglas Sleigh (S3), Muirne Hopkins (P7), Adam Stockman (P7), Adam Woolfson (P7), Rory White (P6), Anna Swan (S2) and Fraser Morris (P7)
Jan Chisholm (1955)
Birthday Reunion, class of ‘60 On 11 June, 2012, nineteen of us gathered at Strathblane Country House Hotel to fulfil our promise of 7 June 2010 to meet to celebrate the year of our 70th birthdays. Despite a rainy start to the day, the weather improved sufficiently to allow photographs to be taken outside, which provided a welcome respite from the cries of ‘I can’t believe we’re 70!’ and ‘You haven’t changed a bit!’ (What on earth did we look like when we were 18?) Especially welcome on this occasion was Pat (Reid), who left Westbourne at the age of 13 and who had travelled from Windermere to rejoin us after 57 years. The prize for effort goes to Alison (Edward) who, in orienteering spirit, made the journey from the deep south, by means of several trains, buses and Shanks’ pony. It was a relief to discover that the sheaf of papers which she carried was a selection of timetables and not an alarmingly lengthy speech! Judith (Naftalin) cut our birthday cake and entertained us with a poem which assured us that any misgivings which we may have entertained about the
suspected signs of ageing were quite unfounded. ‘Should your complexion be less than perfection, Mind... it’s the mirror that needs correction.’ Marjory (Kirkwood) proposed our toast, in which she humorously described her leaving school, with rose-coloured spectacles firmly in place, only to discover – rather rapidly in her case
– that life outside Westbourne’s walls was not quite as she had planned. No difficulty in identifying with that! To complete the afternoon, we raised our glasses to toast the school where so many valuable friendships were forged which have been the means of support to many of us through the vagaries of life. Davina (Struthers) Booth (1960)
A day to remember! I cannot in all honesty claim to have challenged for the role of Westbourne School Dux – in fact I was probably more of a challenge to the teachers whose life’s work was to educate and send ‘our girls’ out into the real world with some knowledge, be it sciences, languages or life-skills. My time at Westbourne throughout the 50s and early 60s was a happy mix of innocence, friendships and sport under the benevolent guidance of Mrs Henderson. If I had any skills, it was possibly in art and sport – turning out for the school hockey teams and especially enjoying some success in swimming and tennis colours. Oh, to be young and fit once again!! But away from school I had discovered sailing as Margaret Thom’s dad had a dingy on Loch Baldowie and a smart yacht at Rhu. And, having discovered
the joys of water sport, I heard that the Glasgow Schools held a sailing competition on the Clyde every year that Westbourne had never entered. So, believing our school should not be out-done, I requested an appointment with Mrs Henderson who to my delight encouraged me to form a school sailing club and to enter the Clyde School Sailing competition – a week-long festival of fun on the ocean wave. We did not win and never threatened to, but that was the start of the club and a long tradition for the school. And, for me, it began a long relationship with the sea which saw me sail all over the Minch and even to St Kilda. However, back to the meeting with Mrs Henderson! I thanked her for her support and was about to leave the office and head back to class when she called me back and said, ‘Fiona, I must tell you that you are to be next year’s head girl here at Westbourne, as I have high hopes for you. BUT, do not tell a soul until after the announcements are made next week – don’t even tell your mother!!!’ The next few days were awful – all my friends wanted to know what Mrs H had
said to me. I had really big news and I was sworn to secrecy and, because I kept blushing and being quiet, was not my usual trait they did not believe me when I said it was just about sailing. What a relief when the next Monday came and everyone got to know firstly that the sailing team was official and then what a shock for my fellow pupils when Mrs H announced that Wee Fiona Cowan was to be Head Girl. I don’t know who was most surprised – my friends, my mother or in all honesty myself! I am sure Mrs Henderson could hardly believe it herself. However that year changed my life and made me a better person. And I look back on my Westbourne years with great affection and the annual reunions with my year colleagues are a great joy – once you adjust to the noise level caused by excited ladies catching up on all the news! Here’s to great memories of a great school and to keeping in touch! Fiona (Cowan) Risk (1963) Aldersyde, Brora
Memories of Westbourne School For Girls in the 50s and 60s Do you remember? • Miss Hastwell and Miss McNair? What a good start we had to our education! • Lilac candy striped summer dresses and panama hats and, of course, white socks? • Those awful smelling cloakrooms with our gym kit hanging there all term! • Making baby doll pyjamas that did not fit? Well mine did not anyway! • I still have the sampler we made. Does anyone else have theirs?
• Terror when Mrs Rose Henderson stuck her nose out of her office? The whole senior school went silent. • Scotch pies or macaroni cheese for school lunch? • The maggots in the rabbit waiting for dissection in the biology lab? • Miss Bishop and all she taught us in Domestic Science? Your little finger is the cleanest finger on your hand. Beating a white of egg on a spotless flat plate with a knife. Chestnuts exploding all over the new kitchen ceiling.
• Sitting on the steps of the hall swapping scraps?
• Andy Stewart singing ‘A Scottish Soldier’?
• Ribbons in our hair and later the dreaded hair bands – no matter what length your hair was!!
• Ski-ing halfway up a mountain at Hochsolden? Oh, that wonderful chocolate cake that arrived on the ski lift at 3pm every day!!!
• Trekking all the way to Anniesland for hockey and Sports Day? • Tunnocks snowballs after hockey? • The No 3 bus, penny halfpenny bus fare!
• Going to ballroom dancing classes? • Learning how to work out how long it took 9 men to dig a hole? Must have succeeded because I passed my Arithmetic. Thanks, Miss Cumming! • Hockey on a Saturday morning and the goalies getting their uniform covered in whitener from their pads? • Prize giving and all those hymns we had to learn off by heart? • Sitting on the radiators in the classrooms of Winton Drive? • Navy – then purple – berets? Wish I’d kept mine. • School magazines and getting all the prefects’ signatures?
• Watching Shakespeare films in the hall?
• All the good teachers (and some bad ones too) at Westbourne?
• Sitting French ‘O’ level twice and still failing it?
I have to admit I loved my time at Westbourne. Did you?
• Wearing thick black stockings?
Sarah (Aston) Chalmers (1966)
Class of 1962 Reunion Fifty years have passed since the class of 1962 bid a final farewell to Westbourne School for Girls. Exactly half a century on we were together again celebrating this very special golden anniversary. The celebrations, which took place at the end of June, took the form of an informal lunch at Glasgow’s Theatre Royal. Classmates came from as far afield as Switzerland and France as well as the south of England and the north of Scotland to mark the occasion. This was the second reunion for the class of 62. The first took place in 1992 to mark the 30th anniversary of our last
day at Westbourne. On that occasion our careers and our children were among the main topics of conversation. Twenty years on and the popular talking points for our 50th anniversary included retirement plans and news about our grandchildren.
all played during break time and lunch times when rain forced us to remain indoors. Half a century on we were playing it in a more ladylike fashion – on table tops rather than those wooden classroom floors which left us with skelf-covered hands.
Of course, our school years were the number one topic on this occasion, as before. Displays of our Westbourne photographs and a collection of written recollections of fun moments during our school years brought the memories flooding back. Even our leisure moments at school were relived on this occasion thanks to one of our classmates bringing along a packet of Jacks, that game we
All too soon this lunchtime celebration was over. There was a sign of the times as we parted. Instead of swapping addresses and phone numbers as we did before, in this hi-tech era we were swapping e-mail addresses ensuring our classroom friendships are strengthened in the years to come. Heather Rose (1962)
Final Reminder for Class of ’72 Reunion on Saturday 25 August The Class of ’72 Reunion is only days away now and should be a really fun weekend and a chance to meet up with old school mates, many of whom we haven’t seen since we left school. We are starting the evening at the Westbourne room in Glasgow Academy for a glass of bubbly and viewing of all the old Westbourne relics that were saved from Beaconsfield House and Winton Drive. We then move on to dinner at the Blythswood Hotel in Blythswood Square where we can renew acquaintances and catch up on what everyone has been doing for the last forty years! Some of us are travelling to Glasgow from quite a distance and have decided to make a weekend of it so there will definitely be an informal dinner happening on the Friday night, followed by a few drinks somewhere and then taking in a bit of culture or some other
activity during the day on Saturday. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you will be around and would like to join us. Through a huge communal effort, we’ve already managed to contact a large number from our year group but we still have a lot who we can’t find so, if you know of anyone else who might be interested, please pass this on. For those who would like to join in on the ‘year book’ for the reunion, please email me a photo of you in your school uniform (or if you don’t have one, then any photo of you while of school age) and another of you now. Also please jot down a few memories of school days – a few sentences will do – I’ve already got a few back and they make great reading! For those who haven’t already booked for the dinner, you can do this through Emma at The Academy – Emma Fitzpatrick, External Relations, The
Glasgow Academy, Colebrooke Street, Glasgow, G12 8HE, making cheque for £60 payable to ‘The Glasgow Academicals’ War Memorial Trust’ or by phone using your credit card – 0141 342 5494. Really looking forward to seeing everyone. Regards. Lesley Brewin (1972)
20-year Reunion We are in the midst of organising a 20-year reunion event for Glasgow Academy, Westbourne, Laurel Bank, Kelvinside Academy and Park School. It will be held in September 2013 with the venue TBC. It will be a ticketed event with either a smart or black tie dress code, food and entertainment in the form of a ceilidh band. Look out for further details. Fiona (Morrison)Hutchinson (1993)
Updates Graham Dinsmore (1988) and Colin Devon (1987) Graham Dinsmore and Colin Devon once again reunited to form The Ginhouse Rocks, a guitar-based rock band with the sole purpose of having fun and raising money for charity. Graham and Colin had decided to raise funds for The Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre after a friend of theirs was diagnosed with a rather nasty type of brain tumour. On Saturday 30 June 2012, The Ginhouse Rocks played a sold out a gig at GHA Rugby Club and – together with a raffle and online donations – managed to raise £2,500. The evening was well supported by local businesses who donated some terrific prizes, some of which were won by other Academicals who joined them on the night. David McCallum (86) joined them on stage for their rendition of You Shook Me All Night Long. Graham and Colin are hoping to have another fund-raising gig at some time in the future and further details will be posted on www.theginhouserocks.com Ian Gemmell (1989) I’m taking part in Mongol Rally this summer, driving the 10,000 miles from London to Ulaan Baatar, via Iran and all the Stans, in a 1.0l Suzuki Swift. It’s a charity event and we are hoping to raise as much as possible for both War Child and The Lotus Children’s Centre. We set off on Saturday 14 July arriving in UB some weeks later... Progress can be followed and donations made via our website: www.tachessansfrontieres. com or our Facebook page: Taches Sans Frontieres Mongol Rally 2012. Jamie Gordon (2006) Jamie, having received a First in Philosophy from St Andrews two years ago, will in 2012/13 be studying in the Foundation Course at LAMDA. Tony Kozlowski (1962) Rena and I had an opportunity to visit Lachie Robertson a couple of weeks ago at Hilton Residential Home in Broadford, Skye. Apart from considerable difficulty in mobility, he was well and very alert and delighted to be able to chat with Rena in their native tongue. He recalled past pupils and events with clarity and offered some pungent comments on matters then and now. Altogether a delightful hour! Jon McLeish (1999) After earning a BA (Hons) in Business Information Management from Napier
Colin Devon 1987 (the gin house rocks)
Dr Philip Tam with his family
University, Jon worked for a leading creative advertising agency for 6 years in Glasgow, before roles at Heineken UK & Subway as a regional Marketing Director. Jon has now fulfilled a lifetime ambition working as a sports agent in football and rugby with the agency Platinum One. He is also a Director of a Sports Hospitality company specialising in trips to The Augusta Masters and The Ryder Cup. Discounts to Accies are available! Christopher Millar (2006) Chris graduated MEng (Hons 2.1) in 2011 and decided a year out was due! The Rugby World Cup drew him to New Zealand where he had an adventurous 8 months based in Wellington where he ran a cocktail bar. He is returning to Edinburgh University in September on an Iberdrola Foundation Scholarship to read for an MSc in Sustainable Power Systems. Jonathan Morrison (1999) I am a British Army Surgeon posted to the US military, heading up part of their research effort in Texas. I have done multiple tours in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and will be returning to Glasgow at the end of the year. We have had a few research successes over the past few years relating to Battlefield Injuries. Greg Stark (2011) Greg who is studying for an MEng in Mechanical Engineering at Heriot Watt has continued his racing career by moving from karts to Formula Ford where he has been very successful so far in his first season with top-five results. Philip Tam (1990) Dr Philip Tam visited The Academy during a recent trip to Scotland, from Australia, with his family Melinda, Julien (5) and Monterey (3). It was his first look at GA in 20 years, and he wishes to thank the staff who made it a highly enjoyable and informative visit
(including some teachers who remembered him after 25 years!). Stuart Turnbull (2006) That’s me back now! I managed to finish ‘The Fireflies’ 2012 Tour! In all, I cycled 1168km (736miles) with an extra 18km detour on one of the days. 20,554m climbed in rain showers, pouring rain and then sometimes in 38 degrees heat with water being poured on us to help cool ourselves down. Gallons and gallons of water was drunk. The Fireflies’ motto is ‘For those who suffer, we Ride’. They raise money for Leuka, a charity which funds Leukaemia research at the Hammersmith Hospital Research Institute. Over the last eleven years, The Fireflies have raised in excess of one million pounds to help fund one of the premier research institutes in the world and as such their efforts make a real difference in battling this deadly illness. I have raised £3,394.33 for Leuka – £3,884.16 with gift aid! My Charity Page is http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/ fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=FireFliesTour201 2StuartTurnbull
Congratulations to… Allan Alstead (1954) Contrary to the suggestion on this dinner menu sent in by one of his contemporaries, the School Captain of 1953-54, Allan Alstead, was not ‘struck by madness’, nor did he join the Foreign Legion on leaving school. According to our most recent researches he is now a member of The Queen’s Bodyguard for Scotland (The Royal Company of Archers). Apparently he recently won the Edinburgh Arrow which was presented to him by The Lord Provost of Edinburgh, Rt Hon Donald Wilson, on Tuesday 12 June 2012 after the archery competition on The Meadows in Edinburgh. The Edinburgh Arrow was first shot for in 1709 and we are told that this may be the first occasion on which it has been won by a member and former officer of The City of Edinburgh Regiment – The King’s Own Scottish Borderers, which was the Regiment that Allan joined on leaving school in 1954.
John Anderson (1979)
Alice Wilson Graeme Noblett
Professor John Anderson, Chief Executive of The Entrepreneurial Exchange, has been appointed as a Visiting Professor within the University of Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship.
Sophie Gordon (2008) Sophie, who left The Academy four years ago as Deputy Head Girl, has been awarded a First Class Honours Degree in Graphic Design from Edinburgh College of Art (now part of Edinburgh University).
Alexander Millar (2008) Alex graduated this June with a First Class Honours degree in Fine Art from Glasgow School of Art. He was selected for a New Contemporaries Award by the Royal Scottish Academy and will be taking his place in the New Contemporaries Exhibition at the RSA in April 2013. He works with various media including sculpture, video, photography and printmaking and has discovered a passion for stop-motion animation.
Graeme Noblett (2002) Iain Gethin (2002) writes: I don’t have anything on myself. However I do have something on Graeme Noblett. After returning from a cruciate ligament injury, and having only played a couple of rounds of golf over the previous
six months, he entered his club championships and won it. It was the Glen Golf Club championship in North Berwick and I caddied for him on the day. I have attached a picture.
Glasgow University with a BAcc Hons in 2008, she has been working with accountancy firm Abercrombie Gemmel in Bearsden where she is now specialising in tax.
Graeme Simmers (1953)
Alice Wilson (2002)
The only news I have is that on Thursday 28 June 2012 at Stirling University, I received the Honorary Degree of Doctor of the University. This was in recognition of my connections with the University when I was Chairman of the Sports Council and also as a non-executive with Forth Valley Health Board. I also served on the Stirling University Court for ten years.
Jillian Stark (2004) Jillian has just passed her final CA exams so is now a fully-fledged Chartered Accountant. Since Graduating from
Alice has recently been promoted to Associate Director at global research company Ipsos Mori which is a big milestone in her career as a qualitative researcher. Alice has recently set up a cycling club in London called Passion for Pedalling (along with Elizabeth Bucknall who was also in the same year group at Glasgow Academy!). All abilities welcome. For more information please see www.meetup.com/ passionforpedalling
Family announcements Births Michael Atkinson (1999) My wife, Alison, and I are delighted to announce the birth of our first son, Murray Fraser Kirkwood Atkinson, on 11 January 2012 in Edinburgh. Murray is the first grandchild for Moira and the late Colin Atkinson (former GAC President and Chairman of GAC Sports Club).
Graeme Cochrane (1996) Gemma and Graeme Cochrane (1990-1996) are delighted to announce that Rose Alice Cochrane was born on Saturday12 May 2012, weighing a healthy 3.9kg (8lb 10oz). Mummy and Rosie doing really well, big sister Millie (aged 2 ¾) very excited and Daddy very proud.
Katie (Junor) Pier (1999) My husband Dave and I are delighted to announce the arrival of our daughter, Holly Isabella Pier, born a month early on 6 December 2011 at the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh weighing just 4lb 8oz.
Robbie Low (1993) If we haven’t had a chance to tell you yet, we are thrilled to announce that the newest member of our family has arrived! Cameron Low came home to us on February 11 (Myles’ 3rd birthday!!) and was born on January 6, 2012. He was a VERY sudden and unexpected, but delightful, surprise... He is doing great and is very lucky to have Myles (who takes his new job very seriously!) as his big brother.
Marriages Scott Chassels (1998)
Scott Massey (1989) Scott and Emma Massey’s son Edward Massey was born on 22 April 2012 at the Chelsea and Westminster hospital, London. Eddie is looking forward to his first trip to Glasgow in July!
Christopher Sockalingam (1999) My wife Helen and I had our first child on 20 December 2011. His name is Matthew Jack Sockalingam.
On 14 July Scott married Jen MacKenzie of Inverness at Achnagairn House, Inverness-shire. It was a fantastic day with the weather being very kind. The Glasgow Academy was well represented amongst guests and the bridal party with four ushers from the Class of 1998 – Chris Leggat, Andy McGeoch, Stuart Low and Fraser Lundie – and Ross Chassels (1995) was the Best Man.
Stuart Low (1998) Holly Isabella Pier
Murray Fraser Kirkwood Atkinson
Magdalena and I got married on 11 June 2011 on the Hallowed turf of Accies with congregation sitting in the stand.
Rosie Alice Cochrane
Matthew Jack Sockalingam
It was a great day!
Engagement Ross Weir (2000) Ross got engaged to Natalie Scott on 15 April 2012 at Base Camp, Everest. They are currently on their travels and plan to get married next year.
Joyce died in 2000. Lex is survived by his brother, Lance, and his sons Lex and Tom, all of whom attended The Academy. Lex Dowie (1970)
Ian D Arnott (1954)
Geoffrey CC Duncan (1947)
2 April 1937 – 9 April 2012 Ian Douglas Arnott died suddenly at the Victoria Infirmary in April. Beloved husband of the late Dorothy, much loved Dad of Kenneth, Christine, Caroline and Colin. Adored Granpa of his grandchildren and loving brother of Hilary.
David Burrell (1973) 20 August 1955 – 22 February 2012 David Burrell attended Glasgow Academy between 1962 and 1971. He was the son of the late David WM Burrell CA (1949) and nephew of Merrik M Burrell (1951). After completing his education in England, he pursued a career in the civil service and local government before taking early retirement. David died very suddenly and unexpectedly at his home in Stroud, Gloucestershire, in February. He is survived by his mother, Anne Burrell, and three brothers.
Ian B Craig (1942) 8 March 1924 – 29 March 2012 Ian Buchanan Craig was a pupil at The Academy between 1932 and 1936. During the war he served in the Navy and on returning home he trained as a Chartered Accountant. He joined James Findlay & Company and worked with them in India for 4 years. He then returned home to work for Lumsden & Mackenzie in Perthshire where he was managing director before he retired. Ian is survived by his much loved wife Sheila.
Ewen L H Cunningham (1949) 21 November 1932 – 14 July 2012 Ewen died suddenly, after a short illness, at Glasgow Royal Infirmary.
Dr Alexander N Dowie (1942) 16 August 1925 – 11 March 2012 Alexander (Lex) Newton Dowie was born in Aberdeen. When still young the family moved to Kirkwall where his father was the National Bank agent. He first went to school at Kirkwall Grammar and retained a detailed knowledge of the town, which he enjoyed demonstrating in his last years during family holidays. Their house is now the RBS branch. The family moved to Glasgow in 1934 and so he was enrolled at The Academy. He would never have claimed to be the
6 October 1929 – 29 April 2012 Geoffrey Cheyne Calderhead Duncan died peacefully at home after a period of illness. Dr Alexander N Dowie
most academic pupil but he learned the advantages of hard work and diligence and these stayed with him for the rest of his life. He did many of the things at school which characterised his generation of Accie: the CCF band, the Globe Players, wartime air-raid watches and BBC broadcasts and of course playing rugby with the 1st XV. The names of the teachers who made their impact on him are familiar: Miss McEwan, Varley, Coleman-Smith, Preston, Aston, Ogilvie. He studied medicine at Glasgow University from 1942-47 where he met Joyce Lightbody of Hamilton whom he married in 1950. During this time he became a very considerable rugby player captaining a highly successful team in 46/47 and earning a final trial for Scotland. He was once written up in the newspaper as the only man in Scottish rugby who could tackle the legendary Doug Smith although he claimed that this was due to his great friend George (Jacko) Kay, also an Accie and remembered recently in these pages, having slowed him up. He did his military service with the Royal Army Medical Corps in West Africa and spells as a houseman in Dublin and London. This was followed by thirty years of general practice in Hamilton for most of which he acted as senior partner. It was a traditional partnership delivering health care day and night every day of the year. He retired in 1985 and he and Joyce moved to Crieff where he became secretary of the rugby club, got involved in charity fundraising and joined the local music society. However, mostly, they enjoyed a less stressful way of life spending much of their time walking, gardening and enjoying Joyce’s cordon-bleu cooking. In 2004 he diagnosed himself as having Motor Neurone Disease although this was not confirmed by his doctors until 2007. He bore his physical decline with extraordinary professional stoicism and courage and maintained his daily routine to his final hour, dying in the BLESMA home in Crieff.
Marshall N Ferguson (1951) 25 December 1933 – 15 April 2012 Marshall Noel Ferguson died peacefully at Crosshouse Hospital in April.
Brian R Gibson (1960) 5 July 1941 – 18 April 2012 Brian Russell Gibson was born in Helensburgh in 1941 and was educated at Hermitage Academy before joining Glasgow Academy aged 11. The school was to mould what he was to become, and set him off on what remained big currents in his life – sport, family, business. The other huge landmark of his life came in 1972, when he met Seonaidgh, with whom he fell instantly and permanently in love, as he was fond of repeating. Family life bore his mark. On returning from his office at Stenhouse, where he worked for 35 years, Brian would be at the head of the dinner table, wanting to know how his children had spent the day – and to be given the announcements from school assembly. This ‘wanting to know’ was one of his strongest characteristics – he was always asking questions, of his children, friends and strangers. No matter where Brian found himself, he would be in conversation with someone within seconds – easy, affable, inquisitive. He would often say that he was born with neither brains nor money. This was only half true. He was a clever man, with a clear direction in his mind and strong principles. He achieved so much in his life with this
Brian R Gibson
combination. He never held back what needed to be said. He did this in his own way, always able to soften hard words with open arms, a broad smile, a pat on the back. One was never in any doubt that he meant it well. Brian will be remembered as a generous man, never happier than when all were enjoying themselves around him. He supported many causes with his time and spirit – as well as financially. He would always provide help to those who needed it, the underdog, from all walks of life. Sport was also a big part of his world. He realised early on how important this had been to his own formation. It chimed with his character that the important aspects of sport were the people one met, the bringing together, the competing and not the winning. And sport brought with it the fundraising discos, the Academical Balls, and countless parties, which Brian loved. He never considered retiring, stopping or slowing down. He loved his work with a passion. At his home he would be found literally immersed in it – the Bloomberg finance channel on, Radio Scotland playing and all around him the FT, Investment Week, The Financial Adviser and countless other publications. He mined them all for nuggets, useful bits in the financial mosaic in his head. He would greet you with whatever had excited him in the financial world that week. One would be drawn in by his enthusiasm even if it made little sense to all but him. He talked often of his heroes: Niall Ferguson, Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill. One should also add Betty Lieu, the reader on the Bloomberg Channel. Many will remember Brian. They will remember his warmth, his humour, his generosity, his open-armed smile. This is the great legacy he leaves. All who knew him have many memories and anecdotes, as well as vivid images, whether it be Brian on a bicycle with 3 dogs in tow, in a striped jacket and kilt, or wearing a wooden spoon tie, blazer and backpack! He did everything on his own terms, very much in his own way and leaves indelible memories in all those he met. Brian died suddenly while abroad in April. A devoted husband of Seonaidgh, much loved father of Zoe, Pippa, Rory and Kerr and proud grandfather. A sad loss to his family and his many, many friends.
John Jex Long (1950) 23 December 1933 – 28 June 2012 John Jex Long was born in Hillhead Street, the only son of Iain and Rosamund Jex Long. He attended the High School
positions with Fisons Group and then Mitchell Cotts – involving agricultural projects in the Middle East and West Africa New South Wales. His abiding interest (aside from family) was golf. He became a member of the R & A in 1947 and remained so until his death. He was also a member of the Gog Mahog Club, Cambridge, where he played until his late eighties. While in the Sudan, Alan and another ex-pat created 9-hole golf course in the middle of the bush at Maridi in Equatoria Province. John Jex Long
for a couple of years and then moved to Glasgow Academy. John followed in his father and grandfather’s footsteps by joining the pipe band and it was here that he began his lifelong interest and passion for piping. After a period of National Service, John went on to have a varied career in property and then, latterly, in banking. Following his retirement he spent more time on his piping: He assisted coaching the juniors at the College of Piping in Otago Street and attended piping competitions across Scotland. In 2000 John and his wife, Joan, moved to Aberdeenshire where he enjoyed ten happy years indulging his past-times of gardening, photography and exploring the countryside, as well as coaching Ellon Pipe Band Juniors. Last year they moved to Stornoway to be nearer their family. He passed away at home with his beloved wife and daughter by his side. John is survived by Joan and his daughter Catriona. He will be remembered as a loving husband, devoted father and father-in-law, loyal friend and a true gentleman to the end.
Donald B MacKechnie (1959) 18 July 1942 – November 2011 Donald was a pupil at The Academy between 1951 and 1959. He was well known to many Academicals and often attended class reunions. He lived latterly near Stow-on-the-Wold in the Cotswolds.
Alan George McCall (1934)
Alan is survived by his wife, June, and their three children.
Dr J Alistair Riddell Q MB ChB (1953) 11 February 1930 – 19 March 2012 John Alistair Riddell Q MB ChB started at Glasgow Academy in 1936, proceeding to the Senior School during World War II where he was voted a prefect in Fifth Year, was appointed Kelvin House Captain and excelled at rugby, holding the coveted position of wing forward in the first XV. Aged 15, Alistair arrived home for lunch one day to learn that his mother had died from ulcerative colitis. In the spirit of those more stoic times he was sent back to school, albeit a little late, after lunch. Inspired by his mother’s indomitable strength and drive and her belief that “if you were determined enough you could achieve almost anything” – coupled with the experience of many pleasant and friendly physicians visiting his house over the years – Alistair resolved to become a doctor himself. His father never recovered from the bereavement and after the failure of the family business Alistair finished his medical studies at Glasgow University only through the financial support of the Hutcheson Trust and the Bonnetmakers and Dyers. It was perhaps these early difficulties that caused him to become an early and passionate advocate for the extra medical needs of those suffering health inequalities Dr J Alistair Riddell Q MB ChB
10 November 1914 – 2 July 2010 Alan McCall attended Glasgow Academy between 1924 and 1929 before completing his secondary education at Morrison’s Academy. His father, Canon JG McCall, was School Captain in 1882-1883. Alan’s career began in the agricultural department of the Sudan government, where he became Director of Agriculture in 1953. He then held various senior
and inspired him to practise initially in Townhead before setting up a new practice in the challenging environment of Easterhouse. His abiding interest in patients was carried forward as Dr Willie Fulton’s Assistant Secretary to Glasgow Local Medical Committee, succeeding him in that pivotal role in 1978. Alistair’s skills as an adviser to his general practice colleagues was further developed by many Scottish and UK national roles – including as a member of the Scottish General Practitioners Committee for 25 years, as Scottish negotiator on its UK parent body and as one of the four BMA Chief Officers. He also served with distinction as an elected medical member of the GMC and was heavily involved internationally with the Commonwealth Medical Association. Alistair was honoured for his service by becoming a Freeman Citizen of Glasgow in 1961, the award of an OBE and the BMA Gold Medal in 1997. Alistair’s last years were compromised by several serious illnesses. Despite occasional flashes of insight – his passing ends a ten-year battle with brain failure that was difficult to thole by those who had experienced his sharp intellect. Alistair’s first wife, Elspeth, died after distressing illness in 1999 – but he found great comfort and happiness in his second marriage to Dr Susan Fraser who for over 12 years sustained him at home in Bearsden and latterly at a residential home in Lesmahagow. He also leaves four children, Sandy, Frances, Aileen and Valerie. Alistair Riddell achieved some of the highest offices available to a doctor, but was most proud of his achievements as a hard-working general practitioner in the East end of his native city; to the end he wore his Glasgow Academical tie and, amongst all his honours, cherished his membership of the North Parish Washing Green Society. Glasgow has lost one of its most distinguished Academical sons.
Brian D Keighley (1966)
Rev. Gordon M A Savage MA BD (1969) 25 August 1951 – 23 May 2012 Gordon Matthew Alexander Savage MA BD was born in Old Kilpatrick and attended Glasgow Academy between 1960 and 1969. He went on to study at the University of Edinburgh, where he graduated in arts and divinity. After he was licensed by the Presbytery of Dumbarton, he undertook two assistantships – in Dyce, Aberdeenshire and at Dunblane Cathedral. In 1977 he was called to the
linked parishes of Almondbank, Tibbermore and Logiealmond in Perthshire. It was there he met his wife, Mairi, whom he married in 1981. In 1984 he became minister of Maxwellton West in Dumfries, and remained there until his death. He was known as a dedicated parish minister and an exemplary clerk of the Presbytery of Dumfries and Kirkcudbright. He was also highly respected for his work in General Assembly committees and for his wise, clear contributions to Assembly debate. Away from his parish, he was an enthusiast of railways and Clyde steamers. He spent two student summers as an assistant purser on them. Gordon was also a keen Rotarian, and at the time of his death was the president elect of his branch. He is survived by his wife Mairi and his sons David and Alasdair.
Alexander W Speirs (1949) 6 May 1932 – 5 March 2012 Sandy Speirs died peacefully at St Helier Hospital, Surrey, after a long period of ill health. Sandy was born in Pollokshields and attended Moray School and then, between 1941 and 1949, The Glasgow Academy. After leaving school he joined the investment department of Scottish Amicable in Glasgow, taking a break to complete his National Service in the RAF during which he discovered an aptitude for rugby. On his return to Glasgow he started playing for Accies, including in the 1st XV in the early 1950s. In 1959 he moved to London Life Assurance Company, became a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute and moved to London in 1967, settling in Cheam and joined the London Section but always retained his flat in Pollokshields. He is survived by his wife, Jean (née McGhee) whom he married in Glasgow in 1963.
Lawrence W Guthrie (1980)
Michael G M Ure (1961) 27 June 1943 – 11 June 2012 Michael attended Glasgow Academy between 1957 and 1961. He was a member of The Academy shooting team at Bisley where he won the Sir Harry Lauder Trophy and the Scottish short range individual championship in 1960. Michael was part of an Academical family. His father, Daniel Ure (who also shot for the school at Bisley), uncle William Ure, cousin Robert Tennant and brother David Ure all attended The Academy. After school he joined the Paisley thread makers J and P Coats who sent him to
London for several years. He left them for the world of classified advertising, first with Thomson newspapers and then with Scottish Media, which involved stints in London, Aberdeen and finally Houston near Paisley. He became session clerk of Houston Parish Church. Late onset multiple sclerosis and a form of cancer began to afflict him about nine years ago. He was a much loved husband of Diana, loving father of Kate and Sophie, father-in-law of Tim and John and brother of David. A proud grandpa of Darcy and Charlie.
David G Ure (1964)
William (Bill) L Wright (1939) 9 May 1921 – 27 January 2012 Bill Wright started life in Uddingston and was a pupil at Glasgow Academy from 1930 to 1939. In his final year he was scrum half in the 1st XV which became the West of Scotland champions. Even in later years his “torpedo” passes were well known. On leaving school, he commenced his studies at St Andrews but quickly signed up to the Navy when war broke out. Bill served for 7 years on the Corvettes escorting convoys across the Atlantic and travelling all over the world. He also continued his service after the war as a Commander in the RNVR. He then returned to St Andrews and finished his degree before completing a degree in Law at Glasgow university. Following his apprenticeship, he joined his father’s firm of solicitors, Marshall & Maclachlan on St Vincent Street. The firm later moved to Renfield Street and continued after his retirement as McIntosh & MacLachlan. In 1952 Bill married Marguerite and they took up home in Clarkston. Marian, then Elspeth and then Ian came along so in the early 1960s the family moved to a large family home in Pollokshields. Ian attended Dairsie House before joining Primary 2X at The Academy, leaving Form 6 in 1975. Marian and Elspeth both attended Laurel Bank school. In 1968 Bill’s passion for yachting led to the acquisition of the Pamela Jeanne, a 1939 46-foot wooden ketch. Yachting became a 34-year passion, sailing all over the Clyde estuary and the Western isles. Bill was also very active in the Royal Scottish Motor Yacht Club and served as secretary for many, many years. Bill and Marguerite moved to Blairgowrie in 2008 to a smaller and more manageable property where Marguerite still lives, visited regularly by her family. Bill died peacefully at Perth Royal Infirmary in January.
Ian L Wright (1974)
More memories of Atholl Very many thanks for the new Etcetera – always a great joy to receive – and thank you for printing my 1969 class photo, to which I must add my apologies to David Campbell for having told you he was called Donald! It was delightful too to read Peter Aeberli’s memories of Atholl – I was in the year above Peter, and his article brought back a great many (generally very happy) memories. A couple of ‘corrections and clarifications’, if I may... Your hunch about Green Room and Blue Room was right, Peter – Green Room was for the youngest, and we graduated from there to Blue Room and ultimately to Indian Room (in our time Green Room was presided over by Miss Black, and Blue Room by Mrs Gold – talk about colour coding...). I’d forgotten about the music in Indian Room, but now you mention it, I do remember having to polish the tops of our desks in time to Grieg’s ‘In the Hall of the Mountain King’, which we loved. The little shop halfway up the Mugdock Road was universally known as The Mucky Hole, for reasons on which I won’t elaborate. The house where the annual sports were held was called Woodlands (and, yes, that is Miss Davidson in the photograph). And the number 12 bus that went to either Drumclog Avenue or Mugdockbank: what a blessing to those of us who lived up near Atholl itself. No such luck these days – you have to walk up from the village..
John Macdonald (1971) sent in this photograph, saying that coming from a state school in 1967 into Form 3C posed ‘a bit of a culture shock with so many characters in both staff and fellow classmates’. But who is the member of staff and who are John’s classmates? John Macdonald (1971)
Dear Sir Regarding 4A Maths, 1952-53 (Etcetera 17, page 30) The always reliable Martin Frame has it right – that’s me, front row, third from left. And the young man next to me is indeed Stuart Mackie. After leaving The Academy I emigrated to Canada, as did John Alcock (third row, third from right). So, too, did our gung-ho French teacher ‘Basher’ Ainslie, one of my favourites, who left The Academy for a position at Upper Canada College. For my part, I became in due course a professor of Geography at York University in Toronto, where I taught for thirty-three years. Now retired, I live in the ruggedly beautiful province of Nova Scotia, ‘Canada’s Ocean Playground’. Email: jandgmarshall@ eastlink.ca Urqhuart Marshall (1956)
Etcetera 17, page 8 You ask for names of Miss Currie’s 1945 4A. I have the surnames only on the reverse with some interesting spellings. Back row (l to r): Graham Guthrie; ? Robertson; ? MacFarlane; ? Donaldson; RAR (Bobby) MacLennan; Malcolm Pender; ? Elliot; ? Rae; ? Phillip 3rd row: Jim Wetherall; Duncan Paterson; ? Dunn; David Hart; John Leonard; George Stewart; ? Taylor; Richard Emery 2nd row: Gerald Smillie; ? Taggert; Collin MacCallion; Andrew Bain; Miss Margaret T Currie; ? Woika; C.Kennedy Mills; James Brown; ? Andrew Front row: A. Douglas Dron; Andrew(?) Carnegie; ? Reid; RAS MacLean; Tom Forrester; Douglas MacKellar; ? Bowie
Ronald MacLean (1954)
Best wishes as ever, Tim Haggis (1969)
Etcetera 17 – photo of rugby team on page 9 David Evans (1957) is getting impatient: ‘Inside the last page of Etcetera 17 there’s a letter from John Dover (1956). I have the sepia-like and rust-stained photo in front of me. I have, as yet, not heard from any in the photo of my request, “Where are they now?” Come on, guys – reveal yourselves.’
Jim Illingworth has sent us the names he remembers, but no mention of where they are now: Back row (l to r): Mr Henry Uren, Alastair Graham, Mike? Gibson, Hugh Millar, Jock Fleming, Jim Illingworth, Hugh Cochrane, Derek Guthrie. Middle row: Rob Chatfield, Ken Macrossan, Scott Calder, Scott Nelson,? Bayne, Bill Murray, Craig Henderson Front row: David Evans, Duncan Naismith
Jim Illingworth (1957)
CLIVE CHRISTIAN DRESSING ROOM CLASSIC CREAM & GOLD LEAF
9 7 - 9 9 G r e a t We s t e r n R o a d , G l a s g o w, S c o t l a n d . G 4 9 A H • Te l e p h o n e 0 1 4 1 3 3 2 8 9 8 9 • E - m a i l s c o t l a n d @ c l i v e . c o m • w w w. c l i v e . c o m