Alastair Borthwick: Rock-Climbing Enthusiast to Look for the Fun in Any Situation

Alastair Borthwick was born in 1913 in Rutherglen, Lanarkshire and he died aged 90. He accomplished a lot in his journalism career. He authored ‘Always A Little Further’ in 1939. The book was his first literary success.

He grew up in Troon, Ayrshire before moving to Glasgow at the age of 11. He went to school in Glasgow. Alastair Borthwick left high school at the age of 16 and went to be Evening Ties’ copytaker. The accomplished author later moved to Glasgow Weekly Herald. While blossoming in the world of journalism writing letters to the editor, he developed an interest in rock-climbing. The young journalist found comfort in writing about rock-climbing in 1930s. The work was published by Faber and Faber. In ‘Always A Little Further’, Mr. Borthwick was able to put the scenery, outdoor feel and fun in rock-climbing down on paper. In fact, it was considered as a joyful classic of outdoor literature that incorporates the freneticness of city living.

Borthwick worked at the Daily Mirror in 1935. He worked at the London-based Daily Mirror for one year before moving to Empire Exhibition and later to BBC. His love for outdoor and talent for the spoken word came down in harmony to spark heartfelt and breathtaking conversations on outdoor topics in radio broadcasting.

Alastair Borthwick joined the 5th Seaforth highlanders of the 51st Highland Division where he served mostly as battalion intelligence officer. He rose through ranks to become a captain. During his dedicated service in World War II, he was counted on to bring fun in any situation. Afterward, BBC signed a three-year contract with him on Scottish Survey, a series on post-war Scotland. It is during that time when he received an OBE award in recognition of presenting heavy engineering festival in Glasgow.

In the 1960s, Alastair Borthwick joined Grampian TV where he led a noble career presenting and scripting programs. Some of the programs Borthwick wrote include Spellbinders, Inventors and Master-Builders. He demonstrated that although he despised war, he had massive love as well as respect for the jock foot-soldier- the PBI. The renowned writer and broadcaster died on September 25 2003 aged 90 years old.

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