James Hunter Porteous was born on 3rd March 1890 in Thornhill, Dumfriesshire. His father, Robert, was an Iron Moulder, and the family lived at 6 Dumbarton Road in Clydebank before moving to 8 Montrose Street in Kilbowie.
James was educated at Clydebank School, where he attained the Junior Student’s Certificate in July 1909. The Junior Student’s course involved a set number of hours of instruction in the art of teaching, and was a standard qualification for entry to teacher training college.
In the autumn of 1909, James enrolled at the Glasgow Provincial Training College (forerunner of Jordanhill College of Education, now the University of Strathclyde) for a three-year course of teacher training offered in conjunction with the University of Glasgow. Students taking this course were required to study concurrently at the University. If successful, they obtained two qualifications: the Teacher’s General Certificate, entitling them to teach in primary schools, and an Arts degree. In his first year he studied Latin and Mathematics, followed in his second with classes in English Literature before taking English Higher and Logic in his final year.
In 1912 James qualified for the Teacher’s General Certificate in the summer of 1912. He became a Teacher at the Dalmuir School under the Old Kilpatrick School Board, and was involved in the St James’ Parish Church Company of the Boys’ Brigade.
James was quick to sign up to join the war effort, and was made a 2nd Lieutenant on the 2nd September 1914, and served with the 6th Bn. Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. Captain James Hunter Porteous was killed in action on the 22nd August 1917, and is buried at Ypres Reservoir Cemetery. His gravestone reads “A secret thought, a silent tear, keep his memory ever dear”.
Captain Porteous is remembered on the University of Glasgow Roll of Honour, on the Roll of Honour of the Glasgow Provincial Committee for the Training of Teachers, and on the Glasgow Provincial Training College War Memorial, located in the David Stow Building on the former Jordanhill Campus.
Admiral Alan William John West, Baron West of Spithead, GCB, DSC, PC is a retired senior officer of the Royal Navy and formerly, from June 2007 to May 2010, a Labour Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the British Home Office with responsibility for security and a security advisor to Prime Minister Gordon Brown.
Prior to his ministerial appointment, he was First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff from 2002 to 2006. He is the current Chancellor of Southampton Solent University.
Shipbuilder, the youngest of three sons of Archibald McNeill, a shipyard foreman. McNeill’s education began at Clydebank high school, from which a scholarship took him to Allan Glen’s school in Glasgow, noted for its technical bias. In 1908 he started an apprenticeship at the shipyard of John Brown & Co. Ltd, Clydebank. Winning a Lloyd’s Register scholarship in naval architecture in 1912, he undertook a sandwich course at the University of Glasgow, combining academic work with practical training in the shipyard, and graduated BSc in 1915 with special prizes in mathematics, naval architecture, and engineering. Having joined the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve in 1911, McNeill transferred to the Officers’ Training Corps at university, and on graduating was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Royal Field Artillery Lowland brigade, proceeding to France in 1916. Promoted captain in 1917, he served with the 21st divisional artillery and was awarded the MC at Amiens (1918); then promoted major, he was mentioned in dispatches.
In 1919, McNeill returned to John Brown at Clydebank. He was assistant naval architect from 1922 until 1928, when he became principal naval architect and technical manager. During the inter-war years McNeill was responsible for the design of a wide variety of ships for different owners and trades, but the work which brought him his greatest acclaim was in the sphere of large passenger liners. As an apprentice he had seen the construction of the Aquitania and, in the period after the First World War, he shared in the planning of liners for Canadian Pacific Steamships, New Zealand Shipping Co., Union Castle Line, and other leading companies. He is best remembered for his collaboration with the Cunard Company in the production for their north Atlantic service of the Queen Mary and the Queen Elizabeth, which went into service in 1936 and 1940 respectively. The considerable advance in size and speed of the Queen Mary presented problems in design and construction, which were successfully resolved under McNeill’s assiduous and skilful guidance. Not least of these was the launching of such a large ship in the restricted waters of the River Clyde, and its accomplishment in 1934 was the subject of a classic paper delivered by McNeill to the Institution of Naval Architects in 1935. The respect in which McNeill was held by owners and subcontractors alike was matched by his relations with senior Admiralty officials. They valued greatly his opinions and co-operation, especially during the Second World War, when the Clydebank yard made a singular contribution to naval building.
In 1948 McNeill assumed the office of managing director and in 1953, when the Clydebank works became a separate company in the John Brown Group, he was appointed managing director and deputy chairman. The completion of the Royal Yacht Britannia in 1954 brought him his appointment as KCVO. He had already been created CBE in 1950. He retired from executive duties in 1959, and relinquished the deputy chairmanship in 1962.
In addition to his Clydebank posts, McNeill held at various times directorships in the Firth of Clyde Dry Dock Company Ltd, the Rivet, Bolt and Nut Company, the North West Rivet, Bolt and Nut Company Ltd, and the British Linen Bank. His attainments were recognized by his university in 1939 when it conferred on him the honorary degree of LLD. He also greatly prized the fellowship of the Royal Society (1948). In 1950 the Royal Society of Arts named him Royal Designer for Industry. His native town made him a burgess of the burgh of Clydebank. McNeill’s concern for the technical institutions of his profession led him to serve as a vice-president of the Institution of Naval Architects, and as president of the Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders in Scotland (1947-9). In 1956-7 he was chairman of the standing committee of the Association of West European Shipbuilders. In addition he was president of the Shipbuilding Conference (1956-8). He was a member of the general and technical committees of Lloyd’s Register of Shipping, and of the court of assistants of the Worshipful Company of Shipwrights. McNeill had an integrity of purpose and the determination and drive to attain his objectives, coupled with a modesty of manner, which disguised his underlying ability. McNeill died in Canniesburn Auxiliary Hospital, Bearsden, Glasgow, on 24 July 1964.
MALCOLM Lackie MacKenzie, who has died aged 75, was a much-loved lecturer at the University of Glasgow for more than 30 years. He was born in Clydebank in 1938, where his father worked for the Singer company. He often said that, although his parents were not well off, they gave him plenty of “cultural capital”. By that he meant that he was encouraged to read from an early age and soon became a regular at Clydebank public library.
He was also taken to the cinema and to musical and dramatic performances. The opportunity to hear visiting speakers at the town hall stimulated a lifelong interest in politics. At Clydebank High School he did well academically and was school captain in session 1955-56.
He took an arts degree at Glasgow University, graduating with honours in English. Just as important as his studies was his involvement in union debates, where he was a contemporary of two people who became leaders of political parties – John Smith (Labour) and Menzies Campbell (Liberal Democrat). Another contemporary was Donald Dewar, later First Minister of Scotland, with whom he won the prestigious Observer Mace debating competition in 1963.
Mr Mackenzie could easily have gone into national politics himself. He became a prominent figure in the Scottish Conservatives, at one time serving as vice-chairman of the Scottish Tory Reform Group and writing pamphlets about the party’s strategic direction.
However, he became disenchanted with the right in the late 1980s and discontinued his membership. His contacts with senior political figures nonetheless gave him a good fund of stories and, with little prompting, he could be encouraged to recount his meeting with Margaret Thatcher in Downing Street, his exchange of pleasantries with Willie Whitelaw and the time he bought Kenneth Clarke a pint.
His decision not to seek election to parliament meant Scottish education gained a teacher of quite remarkable talents. He trained at Jordanhill and started his teaching career at Bearsden Academy.
He also studied part-time for a Master of Education degree and was soon appointed as a lecturer at Jordanhill College in 1964. There he worked under Lawrence Stenhouse, a leading figure in curriculum reform. The opportunity arose to move to the Department of Education at Glasgow University in 1967, where he remained for the rest of his career.
He was an outstanding teacher who could hold the attention of large classes with his erudition, wit and incisive delivery.
He could explain complex ideas in an accessible form and show their relevance to educational policy and practice. His presentational skills meant he was in demand in the media. His face became familiar on television and for a time he hosted a lively phone-in programme on education on Radio Clyde.
His particular interest was educational management and he was one of the founder members of the British Educational Management and Administration Society. His expertise in this field was recognised when he was invited to give a lecture tour in Australia. Later he co-edited a book entitled The Management of Educational Policy: Scottish Perspectives.
His main contribution, however, was in preparing successive cohorts of students to occupy senior positions within Scottish education – as head teachers, inspectors, administrators and lecturers.
His skill as a supervisor of research theses was legendary. Among the many distinguished people who have said how much they owe to his input are Sir David Bell, formerly permanent Secretary at the Department of Education in London (now vice-chancellor of Reading University) and Frank Pignatelli, former director of education for Strathclyde.
The latter, in a tribute to mark Malcolm MacKenzie’s retiral in 2003, described his contribution as inspirational, erudite, challenging, iconoclastic – and brim full of humour and mischief. He added: “My own educational philosophy, my personal value system and my professional skills and attitudes have been significantly shaped through my relationship with Malcolm.”
Former students, who held him in such high regard, often asked why he had never been appointed a professor. He was interviewed for two chairs (at Glasgow and the Open University) but other candidates were preferred. One reason was he was simply unlucky with timing.
He was considered at a period when research income and output were becoming more highly valued than good teaching. Although he had served on national committees and written many articles aimed at practitioners, what mattered most were grants and publications in ‘heavyweight’ academic journals.
Another reason was more personal. In his forties, he went through a difficult phase in his life. There were health issues and both his parents died within a few months. It took him time to recover but he showed courage in facing adversity and got his life back on track.
He then set himself the modest, but entirely honourable task, of completing his career with dignity. Towards the end of his career, he made an important contribution to the merger of St Andrew’s College with the university. The denominational question made that process particularly fraught and he brought skills of tact and diplomacy to the many sensitive issues which arose.
In retirement, he indulged his passion for Hollywood films of the 1940s and 50s, revisited the Angus countryside which he had enjoyed as a boy, and coped philosophically with the variable fortunes of Brechin City football club.
Right to the end he was a mainstay of the Educational Colloquium, a forum for educational debate started by the late Professor Stanley Nisbet. As his health declined, he was given great support by two former students, Christine Wicklow and Dr John Cavanagh. He will be remembered for his formidable insight, wonderful company and fine generosity of spirit.
Main body text from obituary, ‘The Independent’, 7th May 2001
Ian Lennox McHarg, landscape architect, regional planner and teacher: born Clydebank, Dunbartonshire 20 November 1920; Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning, University of Pennsylvania 1954-86 (Emeritus); married 1942 Pauline Crena DeJong (died 1974; two sons), secondly Carol Smyser (two sons); died West Chester, Pennsylvania 5 March 2001.
“The world is abundant, we require only a deference born of understanding to fulfil human promise,” wrote Ian McHarg in the introduction to the 1992 edition of his book Design with Nature (first published in 1969). McHarg was one of the first people to recognise and call attention to the abysmal lack of knowledge of the environment in planning, design and engineering.
This, he understood, was due not only to lack of interest, but also to the fact that the sciences were fragmented and communication was rare among separate disciplines. To solve these problems he created an “ecological planning method” to explore the physical, biological and social processes that shape each place. Working from a foundation of climate and geology, each layer of information was superimposed on top of the previous one. In this way the primary patterns of the landscape emerged to guide the form of development.
The goal of this “McHargian Method” was to determine what constitutes a balanced and self-renewing environment. In this respect he anticipated sustainable design and his early use of computers for his “layer cake” was the foundation of the Geographical Information Systems now widely used as planning tools.
McHarg was born and brought up outside Glasgow, a city he called “a sandstone excretion cemented with smoke and grime”. At the start of the Second World War, he joined the Army as a paratrooper; he served with distinction and rose to the rank of major.
After the war, although he had not attended university, he enrolled at Harvard University Graduate School of Design, earning graduate degrees in both Landscape Architecture and City Planning. He then returned to Scotland, where he worked for several years as a planner.
McHarg was brought to the United States again, to the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia, with other promising young men, by the new Dean, G. Holmes Perkins, to reorganise and revitalise the Graduate School of Fine Arts. He co-founded the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning at the university and served as its chairman from 1955 to 1986.
He brought together a unique faculty of geologists and hydrologists, ecologists, cultural anthropologists and even epidemiologists, to teach at the department with the design professionals. In 1959 he created a lecture series called “Man and Environment”. George Wald, Carleton Coon, Harlow Shapley, Hans Selye, Erich Fromm, Margaret Mead and Howard Nemerov were all repeat lecturers in this popular course, which once included 14 Nobel prizewinners in a single semester. The course led to a 12-part television series in 1960-61, called The House We Live In, which McHarg wrote, produced and presented.
In 1960 he became a naturalised American citizen and in that year co-founded the Philadelphia firm of Wallace, McHarg with David Wallace, a distinguished American city planner. The firm later became Wallace, McHarg, Roberts and Todd and continues today as WRT. He remained with the firm until 1981, creating a succession of planning and design projects for urban, metropolitan and rural regions which are still highly regarded models for ecological planning and design. These projects include the Woodlands, a planned residential community outside Houston, Texas; Pardisan, a national cultural and environmental institution for Tehran; the Lower Manhattan Study; and a plan for Washington, DC.
In 1969 McHarg wrote Design with Nature, one of the books which in the early Seventies helped to create the unpredicted explosion of environmental consciousness. At that time, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring had been published, but Earth Day was still three years in the future. McHarg, along with Rene Dubois, Paul Ehrlich, Barry Commoner and Ralph Nader were a small group of spokesmen for the environment.
Design with Nature presented the then radical concept of the ecological view as a moral and practical basis for planning and design. This view, and the McHargian Method to realise it, have since become standard components of regional planning and landscape design throughout the world. McHarg’s book, now considered a classic, was reprinted in 1992 and has been translated into Japanese, Spanish and German.
For the US Public Broadcasting Company McHarg wrote and presented a film of the book which he called Multiply and Subdue the Earth after the verse in Genesis. He later wrote two other books: To Heal the Earth (1999), a selection of his writings, and Quest for Life: an autobiography (1996).
Ian McHarg was a charismatic and powerful public figure who walked with presidents and Hopi elders, Lady Bird Johnson and Andy Warhol, developers, poets and Nobel prize-winning scientists. Brilliant, poetic, funny, irrepressible and sometimes abrasive, McHarg was able to go right to the heart of the matter telling the Japanese in a speech some years ago, “Everything we (the West) have done badly you have done faster and worse”, or announcing to a gathering of Fortune 500 executives that “the time has come for American industry to be toilet-trained”.
The recipient of innumerable prizes, he recently won the prestigious Japan Prize in City Planning, and was the only landscape architect to win the US National Medal of Art.
Professor McHarg wrote to the school in 1998, during the 125th anniversary celebrations. He enclosed his CV which makes for impressive reading, you can read it here. (Opens a PDF document in a new window).
Text from obituary, ‘The Scotsman’, 16th June 2014
Donald Macaulay was a distinguished member of the Scottish legal profession and recognised as one of the most compelling advocates at the Scottish Bar. He was involved in many high-profile cases and had a keen interest in politics, acting as the spokesman in the House of Lords on Scottish legal affairs for the Labour Party.
Lord Abernethy was a colleague of Macaulay for many years and recalls him with a special pleasure. “Donald was much liked and respected as an individual and as a lawyer. He was thoroughly trustworthy and honest, and had an outstanding ability to present the facts of a case to the jury. He was lucid and avoided, where possible, complicated legal terms. Donald was down-to-earth and had a great faith in humanity”.
Donald Macaulay was the youngest of seven children and his father worked in the Singer sewing factory in Clydebank. His family originated from the Isle of Lewis but they moved to Clydebank in the late 1920s. Their house was bombed during the Second World War blitz and Macaulay was evacuated to first Lenzie then Helensburgh.
He attended Clydebank High School and read law at Glasgow University. On graduating, he worked in Glasgow and then joined a family practice in Falkirk. In the late 1950s, he decided to read for the Bar and became an advocate in 1963 and a QC in 1975.
Macaulay had an agile mind and, when addressing the jury, could get to the heart of the intricacies of a case with a commanding precision. He played a prominent part in the notorious, and legally complex, “Glasgow Rape” case of 1982. The previous year, a woman alleged she had been raped and seriously injured in Glasgow. Three youths were charged and a case was eventually heard in the High Court in Edinburgh. Macaulay was part of the defence team led by Hugh Morton QC.
In 1985, Macaulay represented Robert Henderson on a charge of attempted murder at the High Court in Kirkcaldy. In a keenly argued defence, Macaulay pleaded before Lord McCluskey that as far as his client was concerned, there was “an absence of murderous intention”. Henderson was cleared.
Macaulay appeared in a court for a crime committed on a football playing field. This was so rare that one of Scotland’s senior Queen’s Counsel involved in just such a courtroom drama referred to it as a unique test case. Macaulay was appearing for his client, the former Rangers footballer Graham Roberts. It was 1988 and Roberts and fellow Ibrox stars Terry Butcher and Chris Woods were standing trial on breach of the peace charges during an Old Firm derby, at Glasgow Sheriff Court, alongside Celtic’s Frank McAvennie. “No football player in this country has had to face a charge of this nature”, Macaulay asserted in court. “Footballers are not immune from the law, but the action complained of was totally within the field of play and not calculated against the crowd”. Macaulay argued his case most effectively and the case against Roberts was found not proven.
Macaulay had a keen interest in maintaining and enhancing the reputation of the Scottish legal profession. He had been active in Labour politics for many years and sat on various legal committees. He stood as the Labour candidate at the 1970 general election for Inverness, losing to the sitting MP Russell Johnston.
Macaulay was a member of the Bryden Committee (chaired by Sheriff Principal WJ Bryden in 1978) which considered the most reliable methods of identifying suspects.
He was appointed the spokesman on legal affairs in Scotland in the House of Lords and was involved in the preliminary matters concerning the trial in the Netherlands of the Lockerbie bombers. In 1993, he led a team of Scottish lawyers, including Professor Robert Black QC, to Tripoli for a meeting with the Libyan defence team.
In 2003, Macaulay underwent a liver operation at Edinburgh’s Royal Infirmary. The operation was successful and Macaulay devoted much time and energy to raising funds for the transplant unit at the hospital.
In 2004, Macaulay was asked by George Foulkes, then chairman of Heart of Midlothian, to chair an independent working party to find a new home for the club. Macaulay, a life-long Hearts supporter and a season ticket holder, said: “I am interested in the future of Hearts and to try and take them in the right direct and to take the board in the right direction. I want to see them continue in existence”.
But it was Macaulay’s outstanding ability as a practitioner in the criminal courts that marked him out as such an accomplished and prominent lawyer. He was always straight-forward and honest in all his dealings: those qualities, many suggested, made him one of the most effective prosecutors at the Bar. His cross-examination techniques were invariably courteous, civilised and informed.
Macaulay was made a life peer in 1989 and took the title of Baron Macaulay of Bragar in the County of Ross and Cromarty, in recognition of his family’s Hebridean origins. He is survived by his wife Mary and their daughters Donna and Joanne.
Alistair Kee, Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Edinburgh, has died suddenly, aged 73.
One of the major scholars who shaped the emerging academic study of religion in Great Britain, as well as a powerful critical voice in the field of Christian theology, Kee was a learned intellectual with a brilliant, unique way of thinking and an extraordinary sense of humour who was greatly admired by his colleagues and students.
The author of a dozen books and editor of collected volumes and of journals with international circulations, he held worldwide renown and was greatly admired as a thinker with an independent analytical mind.
His scholarship ranged from an analysis of the Christianisation of the Roman Empire (Constantine versus Christ: The Triumph of Ideology) to studies of contemporary thought, including liberation theologies and black theologies, and studies of individual thinkers, including books on Nietzsche and Marx, and a forthcoming study on Freud.
Alistair Kee was born in Alexandria, West Dunbartonshire and educated at Clydebank High School and the University of Glasgow, where he received his MA in Economics and his BD. He then went abroad, receiving the STM, Magna cum Laude, from Union Theological Seminary in New York City, and his PhD from New York University in 1964.
While a student at Union Seminary, he served a Protestant parish on East 106th Street, an area known as Spanish Harlem, which stimulated his concern for theological responses to economic injustice. He also received a D Litt from the University of Glasgow.
After receiving his first doctorate, Prof Kee accepted a teaching position at the University College of Rhodesia from 1964 to 1967, returning to Britain to teach theology at the University of Hull from 1967-76, where he became senior lecturer and head of department.
In 1976, he was appointed to the Department of Religious Studies at Glasgow University, where he served as head of department until 1988, with an interim year as Visiting Professor at Augusta College, Georgia, 1982-83, where he was elected to Phi Kappa Phi. He came to the Faculty of Divinity at the University of Edinburgh in 1988, and was appointed to a Personal Chair in Religious Studies in 1991. He was considered an exemplary teacher in many ways and his lectures were marked by careful preparation and lucidity of presentation. Although he retired in 2002, he continued to teach occasional classes and remained an active intellectual presence on the faculty until his death.
One of Kee’s important achievements at the University of Edinburgh was creating a strong Religious Studies programme that attracted large cohorts of undergraduate students, enabling the School of Divinity to work more closely with colleagues in the humanities and social sciences.
He also helped to develop an exchange programme with Dartmouth College, an Ivy League undergraduate college in the US, where he also served as a visiting professor in 1990 and 1995. Kee was the recipient of numerous academic honours; he delivered the Jaspers Lectures at Ripon Hall, Oxford, in 1975; the Ferguson Lectures at Manchester University in 1986; and numerous others over the years, in Britain and abroad, including a 2004 lecture he delivered at the University of Heidelberg on Karl Marx and Adam Smith and the Religious Foundations of Political Economy. He was also editor of the important monograph series, Ideology and Religion, at Cambridge University Press.
His scholarship and international interests helped to make the University of Edinburgh an international centre for the study of religion.
In 2002 Kee took over the editorship of the journal, Studies in World Christianity: The Edinburgh Review of Theology and Religion, and he gave the journal a new lease on life. He expanded its publication from twice to three times a year, and chose a theme for each issue.
Kee was widely admired for his sharp critique of liberal theology. He rejected liberalism’s optimistic assumption that a good argument will convince people to change their behaviour; he was far more sober and suspicious of human nature and far more impressed by the importance of material conditions in shaping political and religious views.
He held individuals and societies to a high moral standard, and found parallels between conspiracy theories in the political realm and fundamentalisms in the religious realm: “The high point of liberalism was the late 19th century, when economic and political forces required individual liberty. Circumstances are now very different, producing attitudes of suspicion and irrationality in politics and fundamentalism in religion. Liberalism will not return, but it is possible that after the credit crunch there may be a new suspicion – this time of the ethos of greed.”
His writings reflected his extraordinary personality: independence of spirit, a wonderful sense of ironic humour, fearlessness and no patience for the foolish.
Both his scholarship and his friendship were marked by a striking moral integrity. His theological commitments centred on issues of justice – economic, but also political and social – and his personal relationships were also shaped by generosity and kindness. He was attentive to the moods and concerns of his friends, and strove to respond with sensitivity and compassion.
His school sweetheart, Anne Paterson, became his beloved wife in 1961 and accompanied him to his various postings in the US, Africa and Britain. She died after a long illness in 1992. Their first son Graeme died shortly after his birth in 1967. He is survived by his second son, Colin, and daughter Hilary.
Robert Hope (born 28 September 1943) was a Scottish footballer who made more than 400 appearances as a midfielder in the Football League. He spent most of his club career at West Bromwich Albion, where he played more than 300 league games and helped the club win two major trophies. He won two caps for Scotland.
Born in Bridge of Allan, Stirlingshire, Hope played for West Bromwich Albion between 1959 and 1972, when they were a Football League First Division side. A cultured, scheming inside-forward, he was the general in the team’s midfield throughout the 1960s. Together with Clive Clark on the wing, Hope provided the ammunition for players like Tony Brown and Jeff Astle. Hope enjoyed success during this period, winning the League Cup in 1966 and FA Cup in 1968. He scored Albion’s first goal in European competition when he found the net against DOS Utrecht in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup on 2 November 1966.
In April 1971, Hope was awarded a testimonial match against Athletic Bilbao, then managed by Ronnie Allen, who later had two short spells as Albion manager; the fixture was reciprocated in Spain a few weeks later for the benefit of José Ángel Iribar. He moved to Birmingham City in 1972, spending time on loan in the NASL with Philadelphia Atoms and Dallas Tornado, and later played for Sheffield Wednesday and Bromsgrove Rovers. He went on to manage Bromsgrove and Burton Albion. He returned to West Brom as a scout in later years, and was appointed chief scout in 2000.
Thanks to Andrew Scanlon for suggesting Bobby. Andrew was classmates with Bobby and also Prof Hillis, who is also featured on our notable alumni page.
Text from obituary, ‘The Telegraph’, 15th August 2013
George Hislop, the aeronautical engineer, who has died aged 99, played a major role in the British development of the helicopter and became managing director and vice-chairman of Westland Aircraft.
Hislop was first introduced to the helicopter during his wartime work at the Aeroplane and Armament Experimental Establishment (A&AEE) at Boscombe Down. In late 1944 the helicopter arrived there for trials, and he had his first flight in the basic Sikorsky R4. Shortly afterwards he transferred to the Royal Aircraft Establishment at Farnborough where, in 1945-46, he flew regularly on test flights of the R4 . It was the beginning of his long association with rotary wing aircraft.
George Steedman Hislop was born on February 11th 1914 in Edinburgh and educated at Clydebank High School. After serving an apprenticeship as a fitter and completing a Higher National Certificate in mechanical engineering, he attended the Royal Technical College, Glasgow, and took a First-class external degree from London University. He was awarded a James Caird scholarship in Aeronautics to pursue research at Cambridge, where he gained his doctorate and joined the University Air Squadron, training as a pilot.
In November 1939 Hislop joined the A&AEE, where he worked on the development of fighters and bombers operating at high altitude and the associated meteorological and physiological problems; he also joined many test flights as an observer.
Hislop transferred to Farnborough in April 1945 as a senior scientific officer, looking at the behaviour of aircraft flying at high speed, but was soon asked to carry out exploratory research work on helicopters. Two years later he joined British European Airways’ research and long-term development department, which resulted in the formation of British Airways Helicopters.
Hislop was the senior assistant involved in the monitoring, programming and financial control of the unit. Initially, the main activity was a night postal service in East Anglia, but the long-term goal was carrying passengers between cities.
When in 1952 the Ministry of Civil Aviation asked for a large intercity passenger-carrying helicopter, Fairey Aviation’s proposal was accepted. A year later Hislop joined Fairey as chief designer (helicopters) responsible for building and testing the 40-seat Fairey Rotodyne. This complex aircraft was well ahead of its time, drawing a letter of intent from BEA; there was also interest from some American airlines. But when BEA pulled out of the project the Rotodyne was cancelled in 1962.
Hislop developed the ultralight helicopter, which was later developed into the highly successful Scout and Wasp military helicopters.
In 1960 Westland Aircraft took over Fairey, and Hislop joined the parent company. Two years later he was appointed technical director, later becoming managing director and, in 1973, executive vice-chairman. During this period he led the development and introduction into service of six types of military helicopter, including the Wessex and Sea King. He also played a major role in launching the production of the giant Anglo-French helicopter programme which led to the Gazelle and the Lynx, both built in large numbers; an advanced Lynx is still in operational service.
Hislop served as chairman of the council of the Helicopter Association of Great Britain and as its vice-president. He was president, in 1973, of the Royal Aeronautical Society, which in 1961 had awarded him the Simms Gold Medal . He also received the British Gold Medal for Aeronautics (1972) and the Royal Aero Club’s Louis Breguet Memorial Trophy.
He served as chairman of the Aircraft Research Association and of the Airworthiness Requirements Board. He was appointed CBE in 1976.
A keen mountaineer in his youth, Hislop later took up ornithology and was a member of MCC.
George Hislop married, in 1942, Joan Beer, who died in 2009. They had two sons and a daughter.
William Stewart Hillis was born on 28 September 1943 in Clydebank, but was always known as Stewart. He was the son of a foreman at John Brown’s shipyard. He was educated at Linnvale Primary and then Clydebank High School. He studied medicine at the University of Glasgow, graduating in 1967. He married Anne and they had three sons and a daughter.
In 1970 Hillis became the team doctor for Clydebank F.C. and remained in this position for 27 years. He had a brief spell as club doctor at Rangers F.C. but during this period the club signed Daniel Prodan in 1998 without some significant medical problems being discovered before the completion of the deal.
In 1976 he began working with the Scottish Football Association to provide medical support for the Scotland national under-21 football team and he covered 54 matches. In 1982 he was promoted to cover the Scotland national team doctor. In 1985, at the Wales vs Scotland football match in Cardiff, the Scotland team manager Jock Stein collapsed and although Hillis and the team attempted resuscitation, Stein died from a heart attack. Hillis helped establish the Sports Medicine Centre inside Hampden Park, the first of its kind in a national stadium. He stepped down as the Scotland team doctor in 2010, but remained involved research and he continued to be involved with the SFA. He became the Medical Director of the SFA. In 1986 he became a member of UEFA’s Medical Committee. He was the second vice-chairman of the UEFA Medical Committee and was a medical adviser to FIFA.
Hillis was appointed as a consultant in 1977, working as a cardiologist at the Western Infirmary in Glasgow. Hillis developed Bachelor of Science and Masters courses in Sports Medicine at the University of Glasgow. In 1997, the University of Glasgow awarded Hillis a personal chair in cardiology and exercise medicine.
In 2008, Hillis was awarded the prestigious Sir Robert Atkin prize by the Institute of Sport and Exercise Medicine. He was awarded an OBE in the 2010 New Year Honours list for services to medicine and sport. In 2014, the British Association for Sports and Exercise Medicine (BASEM) awarded him the Roger Bannister medal, recognising an outstanding contribution to the field of Sport and Exercise Medicine over his lifetime. In 2015, he was admitted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame.