Alastair Borthwick: Scotland’s Celebrated Writer And Man Of Action

Accomplishments have come in many ways throughout the life of Alastair Borthwick, dedicated writer and outdoorsman from Scotland. Being in the outdoors was what Alastair loved most, aside from writing, and he spent his entire life living in Scotland’s wide open pastures and rolling hills. 

Alastair was born in South Ayrshire and he eventually settled in Glasgow as a teenager, where he also dropped out of school early to become a full-time worker for the local news company. It’s hard to say turning down education is the right thing to do, but in Alastair’s case, it was. He enjoyed writing, and his first job at the Glasgow Herald, which opened many doors for him as a journalist and a writer.

Adventuring was a passion that developed early for Alastair, and as such, most of his writing took the form of outdoor journeys across Scotland. These adventurous tales of hiking and camping became Alastair’s most famous, but he also proved he was a multi-faceted writer after publishing Sans Peur. Sans Peur, which is known as Battalion in today’s generation, is a detailed war story accounting for Alastair’s battalion during the Second World War. 

Alastair spent years traveling throughout Scotland and neighboring countries during his stint as part of the Seaforth Highlanders as an intelligence officer. This was perfect for Alastair, being an outdoorsman, but he wasn’t absent to the realities of war either. He led several of his own expeditions and saw battle, which was translated into the darker parts of his story after the war. 

The life of Alastair Borthwick was eventful, but not without family. He met Anne when he was in his 20s, and in 1940, Alastair and Anne got married in Glasgow. Wherever Alastair traveled, so did Anne, from Jura to Ayrshire, Anne and Alastair spent their entire lives together traveling across Scotland until passing away just two years apart in 2001 and 2003.

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