Departed Friends and Colleagues –
Morgan Academy Former Pupils’ Association
Former Physical Education and Guidance teacher passed away suddenly on 23 December 2017
Many of you may not have heard of the death of Iain Adamson, former Senior Lecturer in Mathematics and Computer Science as it was then. On his retirement, Iain had emigrated to Perth, Western Australia, and died there on 9th June 2010 aged 81.
His academic career at the University of Dundee began in 1962 when it was still Queen’s College. His commitment to teaching and his influence in University government spanned 30 years. In addition to his Court, Senate and Committee involvement, Iain was a long standing and active member of the Association of University Teachers both locally and nationally.
In 1986, Iain was ordained as an Auxiliary Minister in the Church of Scotland, and took up duties in the Carse of Gowrie which he combined with his University duties after taking part-time re-engagement.
Always a familiar figure striding out Perth Road to the Maths Department, he is remembered with affection by his colleagues past and present, and his many former students.
On Friday, October 29th, a large congregation at Murroes Church paid tribute to the memory of Don Smith (DB) an outstanding and well loved member of the Modern Languages Department at Morgan Academy for many years, who made his mark in many ways, not only as an excellent teacher but as a shining example to all those whom he taught and to his colleagues as well.
“A lad o’ pairts”, though a real Yorkshireman, had served, after field training in South Africa, as an instructor in the R.A.F. on Tiger Moths at the Elementary Flying School at Scone. He fell in love with this area and arrived at Morgan, which he served with distinction both within and outwith the school for many years, starting up hockey for boys (leading eventually to one Olympic star), participating in school outdoor pursuits like hill-walking and ski-ing and organising foreign expeditions, on one of which he contracted poliomyelitis. He was told he would need calipers for the rest of his life, but being Don, he defied predictions and through sheer guts and a refusal to conform danced at a wedding in record time and proceeded to golf and hill-walk till well into old age.
On leaving Morgan, with his beloved wife Tib and his family, he went to Anderson High School in Lerwick as head of Modern Languages, stayed several years, took “O” Grade Norwegian, and wrote a book about his life there prior to taking up a similar post at Forfar Academy where he finished a distinguished career.
I have taught in five different schools in both east and west Scotland and I can say without fear of contradiction that I never encountered a finer colleague and friend than Don Smith. They simply don’t have characters like him in schools any more.
George Stout (1927 – 2009)
George Alexander Stout joined the Alliance Trust in 1951 and worked his way through the ranks to joint Manager and Director by his retiral in 1988. A respected Dundee businessman he went on to become recognised as a leading authority on the history of investment trusts.
(George’s obituary, written by Norman Robertson, a fellow FP, can be viewed online – www. theherald.co.uk)
Born in Dundee, George was educated at Morgan Academy where he was a distinguished scholar, keen sportsman and school captain 1944-45. He then completed his formal education at Edinburgh University gaining a First in Economics and Political Science and a Doctorate for post graduate research before doing his national service in the R.A.F.
Following the disastrous fire in 2001, George worked, with unstinting determination, to preserve the history of Morgan Academy for future generations. He, and any “volunteers” whom he could commandeer, separated the large quantity of Morgan photographs and documents stored in the City Archives, making them ready for cataloguing. He became the font of all Morgan historical Knowledge and assisted in with the selection of items for display in the refurbished room in the School tower. School Magazines were scanned under his direction, by a dedicated group of FPs, and the “Cheesie” cine films were transformed into saleable video and dvd forms. Numerous articles, “Brush up your Morgan” were written for MAFPA “Morgan Matters” which can be seen online on the History page.
His interest in all things Morgan extended to the Invergowrie F.P. Lunch Club at which he was a regular attendee and had many contemporary school friends.
A keen golfer throughout his life his sudden and unexpected death, at the start of a round of golf, stunned all who knew him.
Roy Guild 1923 – 2004
inserted by George Stout
Roy Guild was Morgan Academy to the core. From his home in Mains Drive, he spent his formative years at School under the austere gaze of Dr.Leighton. He had a zest for life, particularly in sport. This enthusiasm rubbed off on his many friends and competitors.
He played rugby and tennis for the School and for Midlands. After he returned from the War, he broadened his interests to the F.P.Hockey Club and to fishing, bowls, curling and golf. Even as his health deteriorated he was still seeking golfing inspiration in new clubs.
Professionally, Roy’s artistic leanings had taken him to the Dundee Art College in 1939 and he returned there as a lecturer on his demob. He climbed the ladder to Head of the textile department and design at Duncan of Jordanstone. After retiral in 1983, Roy redeveloped his interest in painting and stained glass design, giving much pleasure to his many friends.
Roy was among the first to join the reformed F.P. Association. He was a strong supporter to the end of F.P. functions and also gave valuable support to the Archives We shall miss his absence greatly and give our support to his wife Betty and their family.
John Baxter (1915(?)-2003)
John Baxter, who died at the beginning of March, was one of the rapidly diminishing band of men and women who devoted almost all of their lives to Morgan Academy, first as pupils and later as teachers. Like so many others from Baxter Park Terrace, he spent all his school days at Morgan and, in 1932, he won Dux medals for French and German.
On completion of his degree course at St.Andrews University and after further research work there, he returned to Morgan in 1938 to teach French and German. Before he was into his stride, the outbreak of war took him to Arbroath High School along with many evacuated Morgan pupils. From there, he was called to the forces at the end of 1939.
After the War, he returned to the modern languages department where promotion was delayed by the number of senior teachers already there. French and German teaching was divided into two in 1966, however, and John, by then appropriately and affectionately known as “Baldy Baxter”, became head of the French department. He remained in this position until his retirement in 1979.
He took a healthy interest in many school sports, having played for the F.P.rugby team in the 1930’s. He was also Cortachy housemaster for fifteen years.
More recently, he had enjoyed occasional outings to the F.P. lunch club to meet former pupils and other retired members of staff. We shall miss his company there and send our sympathy to Mrs.Baxter and his daughter at this sad time.
Our sympathies go to his wife Beth, whom he met at St.Andrews University, and to his four children. He was such a nice man and will be greatly missed.
David, B Taylor
Former Deputy Rector – David B. Taylor (1917-2003)
The death of former Deputy Rector David B. Taylor, at the age of 86, was announced on 4th January. Mr Taylor came late to teaching, having served with the General Accident for several years before the War. As a post-war student at Dundee, he graduated in history and Geography before going to Harris in 1951.
David Taylor replaced his namesake, Dr.William Taylor, as head of the History department at Morgan in 1958, the beginning of a twenty three year commitment to the School. He subsequently followed Bert Mackay as Deputy Rector in 1968 and served in this capacity for thirteen years, through the difficult transition to a comprehensive school, until his retirement in 1981.
While many pupils will recall his abiding involvement in the Abertay Historical Society and in archaeology where they often participated with him in the “digs”, David Taylor had a wide range of interests including angling, cricket and music.Former fellow students at Dundee University remember he also played a very useful piano.”
Our condolences to Mrs.Taylor and their two daughters at this sad time.
Lindsay Sim & Stan McQuire
Lindsay Sim & Stan McQuire – 2003
inserted by George Stout & Norman Robertson
In the last two months the Former Pupils have lost two former sporting stalwarts of the 1940’s and 50’s in the deaths of Lindsay Sim and Stan McQuire after lengthy illnesses. Both were at Morgan at the same time, with Lindsay leaving in 1946 and Stan in 1950. Both pursued their careers in Dundee, Lindsay as an accountant with Johnstone, Logie & Millar and Stan as a gym teacher in several educational establishments including Morgan, Kingsway Tech. and Kirkton High where he was the principal P.E. teacher.
Although not regarded as one of the fleetest of centres, many rugby opponents will recall with admiration Lindsay’s ability to weave his way past them. He played in two outstanding school sides in the mid 1940’s and, subsequently, in the very strong F.P. sides of that era. He appeared at District level for the North/Midlands; and he was also one of the very few Morgan F.P’s who have had a trial for the Scottish Fifteen. He always enjoyed his golf and, in his few years of genuine retirement until his illness, he was playing regularly at Barry and as well as ever.
Stan had a versatile sporting career. At school he played rugby at centre for the First Fifteen. In summer he turned to athletics and twice lowered the school record for the Mile. He continued to play rugby with the F.P.’s until an exceptionally violent match with Perthshire convinced him that he might enjoy a longer sporting life playing hockey. Again his natural skills came to the fore and he played in the all-conquering Morgan F.P. team which won the Scottish Cup in 1963. He also played for the Midlands. Finally he turned to the bowling green and was a keen member of the Maryfield Rink.
It was a privilege to have shared in their lives and those of their families over many years – professionally, socially and in sport. They are fondly remembered and will be sadly missed.
Charlie Baxter (1910-2002)
A link with the Morgan going back over more than eighty years has been sadly broken with the death of Charlie Baxter in Dundee on the 11th December at the grand age of 92.
Charlie, who was brought up at 13 Baxter Park Terrace, entered the school in 1917 and was a pupil until 1926. He joined the F.P. Hockey Club in 1928 – hockey was not a school sport at that time – beginning an association with Morgan hockey that was to last for the rest of his life. His last formal appearance was at a Club reunion only two years ago.
In the 1930’s, Charlie was not only Secretary to the Hockey Club but, from 1930 to 1935, he was also Assistant Secretary and then Secretary to the Morgan Academy F.P.Association.
His sporting career was suspended by the War when, along with many of his contemporaies, he was ‘bagged’ by the German Army at St.Valery and spent five years as a prisoner of war.
After the War, Charlie resumed playing for the F.P’s until 1953. Thereafter, he continued as the team’s most vociferous supporter, and sometimes critic, from the touchline and woe betide any myopic umpire who did not see the game Charlie’s way. He was made a Life Member of the F.P.Hockey Club.
Many a former Morgan pupil encountered Charlie in his professional capacity as Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages. He was reputed to have conducted 4616 civic weddings. It is said that, immediately after his own wedding he still had time to attend a Morgan game before departing on his honeymoon. Such men are few – and very brave!
Our heartfelt condolences to his dear wife, Jessie, at this time on the passing from our midst on that wonderful character, Charlie Baxter.
Mrs Ruby, Bennet
Mrs. Ruby Bennet (1898-2002)
When the F.P.Association was reformed last year, one of the first to join was Mrs. Ruby Bennet, a former pupil and teacher at Morgan. Her husband was also an English teacher at the school. She was of a mind to take out only an annual subscription but, at the age of 104, who could blame her! Unfortunately, Mrs. Bennet has now left us. She will be sadly missed in Monifieth where she had many friends and where she took an active role over many years in the affairs of the South Church.
Dr James, L. Crichton
Dr. James L.Crighton (1924-2002)
The death of Dr.James L.Crighton in Leicester on 22nd December last, at the age of 78, has saddened many former Morgan pupils. Jimmy spent all his schooldays at Morgan, from 1929 to 1942. As School Captain in his last year, he came from that mould that required both academic and sporting excellence. Joint Dux with Alan Mitchell, Jimmy took medals in English, French and German. He also played for the Rugby 1st XV for 3 years.
Having won a senior bursary to St.Andrews University, Jimmy’s prospective career in the Arts Faculty was halted after a year – only those doing Medicine or Science were permitted to complete the course – and he was called up to the Royal Artillery. He served as a Captain, attached to the Parachute Light Regiment, in India.
After the War, he switched courses, returning to St.Andrews and Dundee to take a degree in Medicine alongside former classmates John Langlands, Lawrence Atkinson and Leonard Graham. Subsequently, after a brief time in general practice in Kelty,Fife, Jimmy went south in 1966 to work for Student Health at the University of Leicester, where he later became Director.
One of the first to offer support to the School after the Fire, Jimmy became a Life Member of the F.P.Association and kept in touch with developments. He surely would have returned to Dundee for the reopening had he been spared to do so.
Our sympathies go to his wife Beth, whom he met at St.Andrews University, and to his four children. He was such a nice man and will be greatly missed.
George Duffus (1944 – 2002)
1200 people from all walks of life, including many stars from Scottish entertainment, attended the funeral service of George in St Andrews Parish Church, Dundee. His wife, Ann (Baird), and their two daughters Lynne and Lesley requested that the service ‘catch the tone’ of George’s irreverence for the ‘serious’ or unreal – and the service became a celebration of George’s humour, his refreshing candour, his abundance of talents and his contributions to the lives of so many of us.
George was born in Dundee, on 1st June, 1944 and began life in the Hawkhill area.
‘My father was given injections for malaria and other exotic diseases and then posted to Mid Craigie Barracks!”
‘He slept at home every night of the War – and as a result there’s now myself, my brother and my sister!’
After a spell in Blairgowrie, George’s family moved to Greenock where George was a contemporary of singer Peter Morrison. They both attended Scottish Schoolboys Association camps together and developed an appetite for performing by providing the evening entertainment put on by each tent at the camps.
When he was 15, George returned to Dundee and became a pupil at Morgan Academy. Those of you who knew him may remember his idiosyncrasies – duffle coat, pink-rimmed glasses, Lambretta scooter – but you will remember his quick humour, beautiful voice, athletic talent and rugby skills. If you were a rugby player you will remember (hopefully, the sounds – but not the sights) of his renditions, in the showers and at the back of the bus, of every rugby song ever composed.
George was a superb, talented athlete who was capped twice for Scotland; was the Scottish Schools Triple Jump Champion; beat the High Jump champion; was Dundee Schools champion at Triple Jump, High Jump and 800 yards and regularly brought home many trophies from Highland Games everywhere.
George met Ann in the French Class in Morgan – but many say Miss Darroch orchestrated more than music! George and Ann were both involved in singing with George winning the Leng Medal and both participating in ‘Trial by Jury’, music festivals and singing groups.
A memorable moment was George playing King Lear in ‘Excerpts from King Lear’, produced by H.A.Taylor, supported by a number of other teachers. The production was entered for the Festival and won its class, and one teacher was overheard to say ‘we will need to begin all over again and it will be some time before we have such talent.’
George left school in 1963 having given a great deal to the life of the school in sport, music, acting and humour. He said himself:
‘I left with a few O Levels – and even fewer
Highers – because I was obsessed with sport
and entertainment. I was far too busy to get
on with doing my homework.’
George, about the time he left school, had begun singing in the ‘Underworld Café’ in the Perth Road. He made £1 per night to begin with and then he started a folk club there and ‘made a turn’ on the bookings.
He also starred in show after show, year after year in the Downfield Musical Society.
George was a winner and in 1968 he entered the Golden Ladder Talent Competition and, realising that the competition was full of singers, he differentiated himself from them by adding comedy – he won the competition! A smart move for someone as naturally funny and quick-witted as George. He then started taking engagements as a comedian, singer and after-dinner speaker.
In 1967, to the amazement of those of us who had shared the highs and lows in the long courtship, George and Ann made it to the altar. Ann has always been George’s greatest audience, but could also be his best critic and the creative tension and passion between the two talents remained throughout their marriage. Ann, a primary school teacher, supported George throughout all his activities, even although it meant him being away in the evenings, and when Ann felt she would like to pursue a job with Grampian TV and then later as a music teacher, George fully supported her decisions and together they worked for each other. Lynne, their eldest daughter was born in1973 and Lesley in 1978. In later years George was always keen to talk about his family. It was obvious he felt very privileged to have family and he guarded their well-being and took great pride in their development and their individuality.
There is no doubting that George was extremely intelligent and able and he quickly became the youngest ever Insurance Inspector in Scotland at 21. George became a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute and went into business with a friend, Gavin Cargill (from Waid Academy) whom George had met whilst competing in athletics for Scotland. They formed a successful company called Waid Morgan in 1973 and George remained in this business until 1983 when he left to pursue a full-time career in his real passion – entertainment.
George always said ‘yes’ to requests from friends and in 1977 George was asked to perform to the prisoners in Peterhead. He accepted the challenge and brought some other performers with him. They performed to 300 prisoners and the evening was a complete success.
George’s talent shone through and he landed a job with Radio Tay in 1980. The next year Grampian TV gave him a six-week show.
In1984 George and Ann bought the Pickletillum Inn in Fife and built up this hostelry into a good going business before selling it on – to concentrate on the new opportunities that were coming his way in entertainment.
This was a busy year – he also went to America with Moira Anderson, to the Scottish Heritage Festival and performed before an audience of 4000.
From 1984, George starred in over 200 TV appearances including having his ‘own show’ on Grampian TV – ‘Its George’. His other appearances included:
Shammy Dab – with Andy Cameron
The Big Break
Random Choice – Quiz Show
Funny you should say that
Its George – Channel 4
Children in Need – presenter
Telethon – presenter
He also starred in 20 pantomimes throughout the major venues in Scotland.
At the peak of his outstanding career George created many unforgettable characters – the Dundee Wifie! Dundee Clippie! Schoolboy! Wuman Polis! His genius was to have these characters say and do the most outrageous things and yet those watching and listening would say:
‘Mey, that’s affey – but ye ken – its true!!’
George had the gift to help us all – ‘see oorsels as ithers see us’!
George spoke, starred and sung in every type of circumstance from the House of Lords to friends’ special occasions – if he could, he would!
George also had an outstanding talent for accents and his mimicry was unrivalled in Scotland. Buff Hardy of ‘Scotland the What’ said, ‘George was the master at reciting ‘The Rumour’ – his range of accents was exceptional.’
At his funeral, some of Scotland’s best known comedians said, ‘George was one of those rare comedians – a genuinely funny man!’
He was – but he was much more! George was a loving husband, proud father, talented athlete, businessman, singer and actor, consummate mimic, and a good and generous friend who gave himself and his services willingly. He played the fool – but behind the mask was a perceptive, challenging wit who gave us all so much and leaves us so much the poorer for his passing.
George took ill in January 2002 and was diagnosed as having cancer of the oesophagus and after a very brief illness died in Ninewells Hospital , Dundee on 7th February, 2002.
Charles Paton (19??-2002)
Former pupil Charles(Chic)Paton has died after a short illness. He left the Morgan shortly before the start of World War 2, but was soon enlisted into the R.A.F. like so many of his peers of that time.
After flight training in Canada he joined Bomber Command as a bomb aimer in Lancasters and completed a full tour of operations. He was awarded a D.F.C. for his services. He survived a war in which two thirds of the 101 Morgan boys killed were in the R.A.F.or Fleet Air Arm. After the War he joined his father’s ironmonger’s business in Hilltown.
Subsequently he was a teacher in Dumfriesshire and, latterly, worked with the Dept. of Employment. We send our condolences to his wife Katherine (Kathie), also a Morgan pupil and a member of the popular Cradock family who lived in Loraine Road.
Air Marshal Sir Ernest, Sidey
Air Marshal Sir Ernest Sidey (1913-2002)
A most distinguished former pupil of the school, Air Marshal Sir Ernest Sidey, died on the 18th September. Ernest Sidey was born in Alyth in 1913 and went to the Primary School there. He attended Morgan Academy Secondary Department from 1925 until 1930. Thereafter he took a degree in medicine at St.Andrews University and entered the medical branch of the R.A.F. in 1937.
The early part of his service was spent in Afghanistan and India. He returned to the U.K. as senior medical officer for Coastal Command in 1943 and,subsequently, in a similar position with Fighter Command 12 Group. In an impressive career, he reached the pinnacle of his rank as Director General of R.A.F. Medical Services from 1971 to 1974.
He was appointed C.B. in 1965 and K.B.E. in 1972. In 1966 he was appointed Honorary Surgeon to the Queen.
Ramsay Walker (1940-2002)
Former Glebelands and Morgan Academy pupil Ramsay Walker died in Wellington New Zealand after a short battle against cancer. He was 62.
As a youngster, Ramsay was a member of the Life Boys and Boys Brigade in St Matthews Church (24th Company). On leaving school in 1956, he was a member of the very popular Baxter Park Tennis Club and played junior football with East Craigie and at amateur level with Morgan F.P. and N.C.R. where he worked from 1962-72.
When his sister died in New Zealand leaving 6 children under the age of 12, Ramsay and his wife Sheila decided to emmigrate where they could help their brother-in-law raise the children.
He continued to work with N.C.R. before joining Tip Top Ice Cream in 1974 and the Body Shop in 1986 where he remained until his death.
Ramsay and Sheila were married in Gilfillan Memorial Church in 1964 and is survived by his wife and daughter Pamela.
John, Sim Kidd
John Sim Kidd 1931-1952
The 11th of August 2002 marks the 50th anniversary of the death of Pilot Officer J. S. Kidd. John was killed when he lost control of his Meteor F4, shortly after take off from RAF Finningley, South Yorkshire, where he was stationed as a member of 215 Advanced Flying School.
John was a former student of the Morgan Academy and left in 1950 to begin his National Service with the RAF at the start of 1951. He was nearing the end of his training when the accident happened, the cause of which, still remains uncertain but was one of the hundreds of fatalities that occurred with this type of aircraft.
My own involvement started on the afternoon of the accident, for I was a partial witness to the event. I was a schoolboy at the time and it was fifty years later that I set out to uncover the circumstances surrounding the crash. With the assistance of people too numerous to mention here, I was able to track Johns origins back to Dundee and through the help of this information forum, eventually locate his sister Sheila who had scant knowledge of the events that had taken place that day.
ms Leitch 1928 – 17 July 2010, school captain, Maths teacher and wife of Ernie Landsman.
Katharine, S. French
9 Feb. 1916 – 12 June 2006, formerly of Taybank, Tay Street, Newport-on -Tay,
Katie, as she was known, attended Morgan Academy for 3 years to finish her education so that she could go to university.
She was the first GLAMIS house captain in 1933/34.
C Emma, Cowie
Miss Cowie, FP and Morgan Academy Primary School teacher died, 22.6.2006, just weeks after celebrating her 100th birthday.
William “Mac” McGillivary 1916 – 2006