Captain Andrew Ramsay Bain

Biography of Captain Andrew Ramsay Bain

Andrew Ramsay Bain was born on 3rd November 1892 at Balqhalston Cottage in the parish of Slamannan, Stirlingshire, to James Orr Bain and Mary Ramsay. His father was a colliery manager and married his mother in August 1886 in Greengairs. Mary was the daughter of Andrew Ramsay and Elizabeth McAlister.

Andrew was the youngest of a family of three. The eldest, his sister Elizabeth McLuckie McAllister Bain was born at Greengairs in May 1887. Next a son Hugh was born in Airdrie in October 1888. Their father’s occupation in coal mining meant that the family moved quite often.

In 1910 Andrew went up to the University of Glasgow to study Engineering. At the time his family was living at ‘The Whins’, Stirling, and rather than commute, Andrew lodged at Cecil Street, Hillhead. He was a very good student, and evidence of his meticulous, well-ordered mind is preserved in the lecture notes which he kept for a life-time and donated to the University. His name appeared frequently amongst the top students in his classes, and he took a clutch of First Class certificates in Mining and Merits in Chemistry and Geology. He graduated BSc on 21st April 1913.

Just a year later the war began. Andrew enlisted with the 7th Battalion of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders and began a long and distinguished period of service in both war and peace. The battalion served in France and Flanders. It was on active service that Andrew was awarded the Military Cross (MC) for gallantry on 28th December 1917, and he was twice Mentioned in Despatches (MID). He remained in the Army, and rose to be Colonel and Commanding Officer of the Battalion, retiring in 1929 at the age of 37. In appreciation, the officers presented him with handsome gifts at a special dinner reported in the Stirling Journal and Advertiser of 14th November that year. He continued his active support for the army through membership of the Territorial Army Association, but returned to civilian life to pursue another successful career as a Company Director and notable public figure in Stirling.

Among Andrew Bain’s community commitments was the management of The William Simpson Home in Old Plean. In the beautiful Ochil hills, it was founded in 1832 for the social care of men who had service backgrounds in the Army and Navy, and later also for ex-RAF men. He was also a Provincial Grand Master of Stirlingshire, a past Master of Lodge Ancient Stirling No 30 and President of the Stirling District and County Savings Bank. To these he added the title of Honorary Sheriff Substitute when he was appointed in January 1957, at the age of 64. Sheriff Robert Maconochie warmly welcomed his appointment and introduced him to his distinguished colleagues on bench and bar. One final title was to be added to a long list of honours, and that was Deputy Lieutenant.

Andrew Ramsay Bain never married. His older sister Elizabeth, with whom he shared a house, died in December 1967, aged 80. Andrew lived for a few years after that and died at The Whins, aged 83, after a long and active career in military and public service.


Captain Andrew Ramsay Bain
Rank: Captain
Regiment: 7th Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders
Degree: BSc
Awards: Military Cross, Mentioned in Despatches
Comments: N/A
Note/Press Clipping: N/A
Photo ID: N/A


University of Glasgow Registry, Faculty and General Council Records

Andrew Ramsay Bain Papers, University of Glasgow Archive Services (GUAS Ref: DC 36)

Biography: Biographical information contributed by family member C S Wood

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