Alastair Borthwick’s Eclectic Work Has Endured Through the Decades

Alastair Borthwick’s life reflected his eclectic talents. During his 90 years on Earth he served as a journalist, broadcaster and author. He is best known for two very different books that helped to shape his home country throughout many generations.

Alastair Borthwick was born in Rutherglen, Scottland in 1913. He also lived in Troon, and later Glasgow, where he attended high school. His journalistic career began after he dropped out of high school at the age of 16. His first job was for the Glasgow Herald. Within a year he moved on to the respected Daily Mirror. Alastair didn’t find London to be his kind of place, so his stint with the publication only lasted 1 year.

According to, in 1935 he returned to Glasgow and took a broadcasting job with the BBC. His literary career flourished in this time. 1939 saw the publication of “Always A Little Further”. This work was a collection of pieces pertaining to various outdoor activities. This work was very unique for its time but it has withstood the test of time and is still in publication today.

As was the case with many young men of the time, Alastair Borthwick was called to serve his country during World War 2. He was commissioned as an intelligence officer, serving in the 5th battalion. He and his brothers in arms, saw action in Africa, Sicily, Italy, France, Belgium, Holland, and Germany. When the fighting ceased he was commissioned to write the history of the battalion in which he served. The resulting work, “Sans Peur, The History of the 5th (Caithness and Sutherland) Battalion, the Seaforth Highlanders” became another defining work for Borthwick.

After the war Alastair Borthwick came home to his wife, whom he had married in 1940. He continued to rite as well as produce over 100 hours of television on a wide array of subject matter. Alastair’s vibrant life came to an end in 2003, his literary and broadcast work can be found in various forms.

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