Findlay McQuarrie was born on 26 January 1929 in Shettleston, Glasgow. He lived in a tenement with his brothers and sisters, surrounded by extended family within a close knit community.
At the age of 18 in search of a career in journalism he headed for his first interview at the offices of the Daily Record. Despite the interview going very well he was told that until he had completed his National Service they could not employ him.
Findlay signed up to complete his two year duty to his country with the Royal Army Service Corps. He was posted to the Highland District H/Q in PertIIRE. Findlay’s occupation for the next two years was in Administration which suited him admirably as he could continue his studies for his return to Civvy Street and his chosen profession of journalism.
Starting as a Private he quickly moved through the ranks and at the end of his two years he had reached position of Sergeant.
After his National Service was completed Findlay travelled back to Glasgow. He took up a telephonist role with The Glasgow Herald/Bulletin and Evening Times group. The News Editor was well aware of Findlay’s ambitions and after a while gave him the chance to further his career by sending him to the North East of Scotland – Stonehaven to write for the weekly paper.
It was happy time for Findlay. During his 12 years in the profession he met his future wife April, a fellow journalist at the Mearns Leader.
In 1961 Findlay was ready for a change so he joined the National Trust for Scotland as a PR Officer. “The objectives of the Trust were very much aligned to that of April and I. We both believed in conservation and the land should be open for all to enjoy.”
Findlay ended his time with the Trust as a Deputy to the Director of the Scotland National Trust and was awarded an OBE.
One of his proudest moments was when he was given permission to acquire The Tenement House, Garnethill. Now a living museum, a testament to the very special place and time the tenement represents in Scottish culture and life. Having being brought up in a tenement himself no one was more qualified nor informed than Findlay to present a case for the tenement being preserved as the icon of the people from all over Scotland.
After a bad fall, a spell in hospital and a stay in another care home Findlay, who lives with a macular degeneration – a debilitating eye condition, finally arrived in Erskine.
“As I had visited friends here many times over the years I knew exactly what I was coming to when I made Erskine my home. Although it’s quieter just now due to the circumstances we are living in I have no doubt we will be getting back in to the swing of things as soon as we start to return to normal.
“When we can venture out again my ideal bus outing would be to the beautiful Culzean Castle overlooking the Firth of Clyde, on the Ayrshire coast. It would be a very scenic drive down to it and there is so much to see and enjoy.”
When it’s safe to do so, Veterans like Findlay look forward to day trips out and about again.
Your donation today will give Veterans hope for the future. A chance to look forward to times when they can get out and about again.