Alastair Borthwick: Naturist, Soldier, Author

Alastair Borthwick (17 February 1913 – 25 September 2003) was an author, rock climber, broadcaster, and World War 2 veteran from Scotland. His literary career truly kicked off with his first breakout work in 1939, “Always a Little Further”, a memoir of his experiences rock climbing throughout the Scottish highlands, followed by “Sans Peur” in 1946, a novel concerning World War 2.

Even as a teenager Borthwick pursued his literary ambitions, working with publications such as the “Evening Times” and the “Glasgow Herald”. By the 1930’s Alastair began publishing writings on his second passion, rock climbing, with Faber and Faber. His writing was notable for its unique humor and prose. When World War 2 kicked off Alastair joined the fight, quickly advancing to the rank of captain. He was responsible for a very notable feat wherein he managed to lead 600 men to a flanking position behind German lines in the Netherlands at night without the aid of maps. Alastair’s time on the battlefield served not to hamper his literary passion but to enhance it, as it inspired his second notable work in “Sans Peur”.

After the war Alastair got his start in broadcasting with the BBC, being contracted to present a three year series covering the state of Scotland. By 1952 he was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire. By 1960 he had moved to South Ayrshire with his wife Anne, the place where he would spend the rest of his days. He continued to work on various projects in the field of television and radio broadcasting until the end of his life, writing and presenting programs on a menagerie of subjects, regarding his work on the program “Scottish Soldier”, a thirteen part series presented from the perspective of a Scottish infantryman in World War 2, as his best work in this period

https://chronicleweek.com/2018/10/alastair-borthwick-modest-writer-whose-heart-belonged-nature/

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