Photographer's Note

A view taken last month from near to the six mile road which runs between the village of Broughton and that of Biggar. The valley had endured a fairly light snowfall which also covered Kilbucho Hill which you can see on the left. To the right you can see the remains of a disused railway and its accompanying trench disappearing into the distance towards Biggar.

This area and the hills around Broughton were dear to the heart of the famous novelist, John Buchan. Buchan is probably best known for his novel "The Thirty-Nine Steps" as well as others such as "Huntingtower" and "Prester John" but he was also an important and influential individual politically, eventually ending up with the title John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir PC GCMG GCVO CH.

Born in 1875, the son of a Free Church of Scotland minister in Perth, John Buchan was brought up in Kirkcaldy in Fife, and spent many summer holidays with his grandparents in Broughton where he developed a love of walking, as well as of the local scenery and wildlife, which often featured in his later novels.

At Hutchesons' Grammar School in Glasgow, Buchan was awarded a scholarship to the University of Glasgow at the age of 17 and studied classics, wrote poetry, and became a published author. In 1895 he won a further scolarship and moved to Brasenose College, Oxford where he studied classics and won literary prizes as well as becoming elected president of the Oxford Union.

After Oxford, as well as continuing his writing, Buchan became more and more involved in the political scene, serving as a private secretary to the colonial administrator of various colonies in southern Africa. Buchan was in 1927 elected Member of Parliament for the Combined Scottish Universities, but he spent most of his time on his writing career, notably writing "The Thirty-Nine Steps" and other adventure fiction. In 1935 he was appointed Governor General of Canada by King George V, on the recommendation of Prime Minister of Canada R. B. Bennett, to replace the Earl of Bessborough. He occupied the post until his death in 1940. He received a state funeral in Canada before his ashes were returned to the United Kingdom.

You can see a larger version of this photograph on "beta" TE here.

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Additional Photos by John Cannon (tyro) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1985 W: 427 N: 7659] (30513)
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