Duncan McNaughton MA, FSA (Scot)

Duncan McNaughton was welcomed in to the Primary High School by Miss Nairn, whose Infants’ Class he joined in 1915.

Thus began a distinguished academic career which developed during his schooldays as a Pupil of the High School of Stirling, seldom failing to appear in the Prize List.

He left school in 1928 and, following graduation, he completed Teacher Training and began to seek employment at a time when there was a two year waiting list for teaching posts in Stirlingshire.

In April 1937, he responded to an invitation to join Miss May Lindsay, at that time Head of the History Department, who had begun to find ever increasing numbers too heavy for her. Duncan jumped at the opportunity to return to his Old School as her Assistant, taking over from her later that year when she developed a severe and fatal blood poisoning from an insect while holidaying in the south of France. However, this meant that for several months he had to teach double classes and present two overstrength classes – one had over 70 – to the Leaving Certificate.

He spent the next ten years at the School where his love for the old cloistered building developed still further, together with many friendships formed in the staffroom at the foot of the Observatory Tower. So deep were his feelings that he has written his memories of the times he spent at the School, both as Pupils and Master from which it is evident the he never forgot those days of the people around him.

In 1991, after the Grand Reunion in the then new Stirling Highland Hotel in the Old School Building in Academy Road, negotiations took place with the Secretary of the Former Pupils’ association concerning his desire to recognise the High School in his Will be bequeathing a substantial capital sum to be used to make an Annual Grant to the top pupil in the School. Correspondence was carried on for some time and the matter placed subsequently in the hands of the School and Mr McNaughton’s Solicitor, the outcome being the recent payment of the legacy of £20,000 from Duncan McNaughton’s Estate to his beloved High School of Stirling.

The legacy of £20,000 was lodged in a high interest account with the Bank of Scotland in February 1997. it has been agreed with the executors of Mr McNaughton’s estate that the interest from the capital sum will be used to provide prizes for all our senior school prizewinners and also provide an additional award for the Dux of the school in accordance with Mr McNaughton’s wishes. This arrangement will commence as from the Prizegiving of 1998 when the Duncan McNaughton Bequest will be awarded for the first time this ensuring that Duncan McNaughton’s name will live on in the High School of Stirling in the years to come.