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Education (university)
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Jim Thompson

00.00 - 9.17
He was born in Dundee in Clemenpark Nursing Home, a poor house, on December 2nd 1931. He lived in Wyan street for three years until he moved to the Steel Houses in Kennybank. This was due to his mother being from a wealthy family and his grandmother being a "snob" and not wanting them living in the lower class areas of Dundee, thus she helped them move. His father was a labourer, constantly in and out of work, meaning his mother was means tested and received 3 shillings for her children per week until she was spotted with gold on her hands. His father was extremely left-wing and fought for workers rights.

9.17 - 15.25
For his first 6 year he was a very unwell child, contracting pneumonia every year. He was in and out of hospital and claims that he "lived off charity" because his parents couldn't pay the hospital bills. He recalls a family holiday that he missed out on when his family went camping and left him in the hospital.

15.25 - 21.33
He attended school at Cleblands, until the war broke out and they gathered in church halls due to bomb threats due to the school being close to the ship yards. They also gathered in small groups in children's homes until the end of the war. He attended the Morgan academy and recalls never being fond of any teachers throughout his school life and only liked one teacher from his university experience.

21.33 - 27.27
He felt his mother was very ambitious for him and favoured him over his siblings. His family were not particularly religious however his grandfather was an elder at their church for many years until an affair between the pastor and a young girl broke out and he found himself put off the church and religion itself. His mother briefly taught at Sunday school despite being an atheist.

Jane Cameron

00:00 - 04:51
She studied Interior Design at Duncan of Jordanstone from 1974 to 1978. Chose Duncan of Jordanstone because it was the only place available at the time. She was in Canada on holiday when she got her results. She hadn't applied to art college yet but mother applied for her. She had an interview and was then offered a place. This all happened quite late in the application process and she was lucky to get in. She was born in Perth but moved around a lot with her family as a child. She went to school in Manchester. She says she is more Scottish than she sounds because she has an English accent. She wanted to come back to Scotland. Her family had moved to Inverness before she started her course. Interior Design course at Duncan of Jordanstone was a dedicated four year course. She was inspired to go to art college by a trip to an art school in Canada. Course at Duncan of Jordanstone was a really good course and quite architectural. Members of staff included: Val Morocco, an architect, who was head head of department. Mike Green who was an interior designer. Dennis White, who was a furniture designer. Val Morocco was Alberto Morocco's brother.

04:52 - 10:25
The course ran nine to five every day. There was a lecture everyday and they had time in the studio. Staff were always about. She was inspired by Neil Dallas Brown , who taught basic design, because he was brilliant on his theory of design and practice of design. Lectures were given by staff from various departments. She had 'Life Drawing' with Grant Clifford and was made to paint with her left hand. Students had a set project at the beginning of each year e.g. design a shop/bathroom/exhibition. Six week long projects. She had lectures in 'History of Architecture', 'History of Art', Basic Design', 'Drawing' and 'Painting', 'Textiles', 'Weaving', 'Sculpture' and 'Photography'. The course was very studio based. There was a good American lecturer for 'History of 'Architecture. She also participated in Furniture Making. It was a full on course. She never left the college before five o'clock. She once spent four days and nights non-stop working. There were a lot of drugs available in Dundee at the time. There was not a lot of relationship between the college and the university. Art students needed a special pass to get into the union.

10:26 - 15:40
The staff at the time was, Mike Green who she found was the most influential and was very creative. Val Morocco was more rigid. Green was very supportive and later taught at Edinburgh College of Art and became head of department but was under Val Morocco while at Dundee. Dennis White was really nice and very caring. He was gentlemanly but not an inspirational figure. There were no part-time staff. She says it is important for interior designers to be at an art college as there is so much inspiration. There was also James Morrison but he did not teach them directly. Grant Clifford was also a great influence. Jack Nox was also around at the time. She remembers some of these people being around and her friends talking about them.

15:41 - 16:58
She never came across the art college principal and did not know that one existed. There was a lot of close contact with 'Architecture and Town Planning' students. John Browning, an architect, set up drama society.

16:59 - 22:09
There were only six people in her year group. John Trasise, from Fife. Ellen Kristofferson, from Norway, was slightly older and was a good influence. She has a successful business in Norway and has a great relationship with Dundee. There were many Norwegians in Dundee at the time. A girl from her course only stayed for one year after meeting and marrying a Norwegian. Bill Fawns, from Dundee, was also in her class. She can't remember the others. She also knew people in other years quite well. Helen MacNamara, Hamish, Fiona Classan and Susan Deo. Dundee had very good reputation because it was architectural biased, an aspect which helped her at interviews. She also knew fine art students as well. She would go to pubs and then someone's flat after college. Art college had its own student union. Pool was popular. Canteen served only unhealthy food.

22:10 - 25:08
There were no societies or activities for students at the time which Jane was disappointed by. She would have wanted to get more involved with activities at the university but she did not think those things were meant for her. She bought clothes at charity shops. She made a coat out of a blanket from a charity shop with a hole cut in it. She stayed in various places while at Dundee such as Balgay Hill student residencies, Hilltown, Commercial Street and Step Row.

25:09 - 27:35
The Matthew Building opened in 1974. She was the first group of students in it. She found it was a very clean building, and Interior Design was on the fifth floor. The library was very good. The other building was used for some classes but lectures were in the Matthew Building.

27:36 - 31:30
Degree Show and Graduation: It was known as the Diploma Show during her time. Her dad died three days before her final submission so unfortunately missed her degree show. Degree show was held in a big hall. It was not as big back then as it is now. She did not go to previous years' degree shows but wish she had. There was not as much inclusion back then. She went to her degree ceremony in September. She has sad memories of that day because her dad was not there. She had spoken to dad on the phone the day before he died.

31:31 - 35:28
At the time, the record shop, Grouchos, was a popular place. It was a hub for student activity where they would swap records. There was also a pub culture. She went to St Andrews and sailed on the Tay once but had to be rescued. She and her friends would take the college van on outings, such as a trip to Perth or up the hills. Went to a Revels at Christmas time which had various themes. Architects would hold parties. There was not so much of a joining up of students through activities.

35:29 - 38:02
City Museum/ McManus Galleries and further activities: She never went to McManus Galleries but had a friend who lived nearby. She also never went to the football. She walked across the bridge to Tayport and went to the Caird Hall to see wrestling. She had lots of curries and went to see lots of films. She went to a cinema near Commercial Street. She also went to bookshops a lot. She would have liked to have gotten more involved. Medical students used to do a lot together. There was no bridge between the university and the art college even though she would have liked to have gotten more involved.

38:03 - 40:52
Links with older students: There was an awareness of what older students had gotten up to. They were quite close. They all knew where everyone had gone. She stayed with someone in London form the year above. Many of the students came back to Scotland. Her first job was at Edinburgh Council. She then went to London for twelve years doing various jobs but always wanted to go back to Scotland. There were few interior design jobs in Dundee at the time. Lots of architects stayed in Dundee. They were a very supportive year group. They would help each other and there was no competitiveness.

40:53 - 43:45
She found that other courses were not as technical at other institutions at the time. Students need to learn how to be creative. Mike Green was an influence. Dundee students would be able to show off technical drawing skills. She stresses the importance of knowing how to develop creativity. You need to learn about life, art and other influences.

43:46 - 48:02
After her time in London she got a job teaching at Edinburgh College of Art thanks to Mike Green. She had had her own business in London and two little children. She didn't want her children to grow up in London, she stayed in Bridge of Allan. Her job teaching at Edinburgh College of Art was the best job she ever had, it was exhilarating. She found teaching students inspirational. She learned so much from the students and did the job for seven years. She then became an interior designer at Stirling University. She then became art curator while continuing to do interior design. Being art curator is not as easy a job as she had thought. She currently does three days of interior design and two days as art curator but thinks the time should be divided up the other way round. Art curation takes more time. In her job she creates spaces for the paintings to go into. She really loves the student environment. Dundee was so full of ideas when she was there. Her job at a university reminds her of that. She hankers after the art college life.

Dennis Bethel

00:00 - 06:31
He was born in Bevington, Cheshire in September 1925. He had a happy child. He was an only child and went to a local council school before then getting a scholarship and going to a Public School. He went to Cambridge where here he got his PhD. He got a job in Dundee in 1955 and has stayed ever since. The university was much smaller back then. Everything's closed down at five o'clock and all the staff knew the staff in other departments. He worked in the chemistry department. His father was an accountant and his mother worked in an antique shop. His father's brother did well as an accountant at various companies. He went on holiday with his friend Richard, his fiancé and his sister. Richard's sister shared a flat with a girl in London. He visited the flatmate many times and ended up marrying her. They got married in Grimsby and came to Dundee a few months later. Their first house was in the Nethergate, one story down. They later sold the house to the church of the spirit. He tells a story of wife's brother, an accomplished oboist, who would tell fellow musicians who were in Dundee at the time to stay with his sister. One time, after they had sold the house, a horn player went along unannounced on a Sunday looking or a place to stay and ended up shouting through the letterbox to see if they were in. When he arrived in 1955 the university was still a part of the University of St Andrews. He worked in the chemistry department his whole working life.

06:31 - 14:12
He became involved in the climbing club, Grampian Club, through someone else from the chemistry department. It was something many families got involved in. The children would go to the beach and the fathers would go climbing. Many of the families had children similar ages to his own. They would go on various trips together. He went on a trip to Greenland through the Grampian Club. It was a joint exhibition organised by the universities of Strathclyde and Dundee. The organisers wanted more people to go on it because it would be cheaper for everybody. He was there for four weeks. They climbed mountains there. Many different people went on the trip such as botanists, ornithologists and experts on snow and ice. The Grampian Club was founded in 1927. They would go on trips once a month. They took the bus on trips and would stay in hotels and go for meals after. At its peak it had two hundred members. There were about twenty to fifty active members, a bus full of people, who would go on the trips. Some people did not take the bus but made their own way there. It was financed through subscription but some would also leave money for the club when they died. He has done about two hundred Monroe's. One of the most dangerous things he has done happened during the Greenland trip. While camping on a glacier he went to collect water without wearing crampons and had he slipped he would have been swept away.

14:12 - 15:47
Originally the only people who were involved were of a very professional background. Now it is much more broad. It used to be very formal. New members had to be proposed and seconded. There was not a lot of equipment for the club at the time. There were no anoraks but there were old army ice axes you could use. As it became more popular more equipment started to develop.

15:47 - 16:49
He stayed in four or five. He tells story of how one particularly talkative member of the club put off others from staying in a bothy.

16:49 - 18:00
He would sometimes do climbs on his own, about once or twice a year. He would sleep overnight in the car. There were no phones at the time so it was quite a brave thing to do. You could be in a lot of danger while climbing. He recalls a story of some climbers getting avalanched and having to be rescued by mountain rescue.

18:00 - 19:09
Favourite place to climb and fellow climbers: The place he went most often was near Glencoe. There was very good camaraderie between all of the climbers. It was easy to know everyone because Dundee is a small city.

19:09 - 21:12
He had not originally intended to settle in Dundee. He says most English universities were in big cities and an attraction of Dundee is its surroundings. He is still in touch with many of the climbers and they meet once a month to have lunch together. He similarly regularly meets with the chemists.

21:12 - 26:18
He first briefly talks about his collection of old photographs of Dundee and his interest in photography. He then says how they would often take the train to go climbing and that they went climbing all year round. There was also competition among the club for Monroe climbing. There have been fatalities while climbing. Someone with epilepsy died on his way off a hill one time. Another person was hit by a bus while they were getting off another bus. It was a well run club. Health and safety changes affected the club. For example, drivers could not drive for as long as they used to without a break so they were not able to go on long day trips as they used to.

26:18 - 28:45
He possesses a collection of old photographs of Dundee. There are only still films, no cine films. He looked for special trains and would take pictures of them. He photographed the original university buildings and also took pictures of Perth Road. He also took pictures of Half-Time? School which was meant to be rebuilt but never was. He had a collection called Disappearing Dundee. The photos are still in good condition.

28:45 - 30:15
He started at the university in 1955. While he was there it became its own university. When it became its own university there was more money for it to spend. The split from St Andrews was fine for departments which were just in one of the universities. There were difficulties however when it was split across two as it was for chemistry. They had to set a common exam. Before the split they often felt that they were not getting their fair share of the money.

30:15 - 36:48
He says that the university's strength is medical science. He thinks the new developments in the city are a good things. Things he would like to see include the Royal Scottish National Orchestra coming to Dundee more often. He would also like to see a big theatre for touring companies to come. He mentions the derelict King's Theatre in Dundee. He had a friend who campaigned for its renewal and he had too for a little bit. Dundee used to have a few theatres. He took his children to see a performance of Peter Pan where the actors would fly about on wires. He has also been involved in the Dundee Access Group. They have achieved things such as getting more wheelchair accessible taxis. He has been involved in Dundee Access Group for twenty years. His late wife was involved with Oxfam and helped to set up the Oxfam shop on the Perth Road which was the first one in Dundee. His wife also helped to set up Shopmobility.

Hugh Pincott photographic collection

  • UR-STU 7
  • Collection
  • 1960 - 2016
Digital copies of photographs taken by Hugh Pincott and others covering his time as a student in Dundee Quote from Pincott email of 13/9/2016: ....Although not labelled individually, the b/w images can be identified from the file title and reference to NPTTL [Nine Pints to the Law, the Hugh Pincott autobiography,(2016)]....B/W folder 85 contains images that were extracted from sections 36 to 49 (mainly June 1964). They were selected for a special project which I believe was to provide pics of Old Dundee to decorate a friend's pub in Nelson Street. It would be a bit time-consuming to fit them back into original positions.'

Dr Hugh Pincott

Norma Starszakowna papers

  • UR-SF 86
  • Collection
  • 1983 - 2019
Cuttings from newspapers and other publications, Prospectii , Curriculum Vitae, and correspondence relating to Norma Starszakowna, her career as a Textile Designer, her involvement with Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and the work of students.

George Mackie, Lord Mackie of Benshie

  • MS 404
  • Collection
  • 1907-2015
Letters, memos, reports, ledgers and other papers relating to various aspects of Mackie's life, including being candidate, MP, Chair, Senior Member and Peer of the Scottish Liberal Party and Liberal Party. Papers relating to his farming and business interests in Scotland and his rectorship at the University of Dundee. Also some papers relating to his father, Maitland and grandfather, John Mackie.

George Yule Mackie, Lord Mackie of Benshie

Copies of Photographs of Dundee

Photographs of Dundee of trams, the last car (tram) with crew, Nethergate and Old Street, Hillton, Old Street and City Churches, Tay Bridge from North, Murraygate, West Park Blackness, High Street, Royal Arch, a horse hair special at the Albert Institute, football specials outside the grounds, a de-railment at Minies and the great tram crash 1954.

Live and Learn in Tayside

  • RU 921
  • Collection
  • 1976-1977
5 digital videos of the complete film which markets the University and city of Dundee to potential students. Features the staff and students of the faculties of Arts & Social Sciences, Medicine & Dentistry, Science, Law, Engineering and Applied Science, and Environmental Studies. Contains scenes in the lecture theatres, tutorials and laboratories, as well as student leisure, recreation and sport. Staff featured include Gavin McDonald of Physics; John Charlton of Civil Engineering; Brian Makin of Electrical Engineering; Donald Southgate of History; Bill Ferrier of Physics; Jim Caird of Geography; Jim Paul of Architecture; Robert Ramsay; Alan Kennedy of Psychology; Sir William Stewart of Biological Science; Peter Garland of Biochemistry; John McManus of Geology; J.D. McEwan of Dentistry; Frederick Abbat; David Barr of Physical Education; Robert Robertson, Dundee Rep Theatre Director; Rev Malcolm Richardson; Chris Davey of History, Nigel Harris Languages and David Middleton of Mechanical Engineering

University of Dundee

Dr Alwyn Scarth papers

  • UR-SF 74
  • Collection
  • 1950s-c2009
Notebooks and other material relating to Scarth's time at St Catherine's; Correspondence, files and papers relating to Scarth's employment at University of Dundee, his teaching and research, also photographic material. Research papers and photographic material relating to Scarth's publications.

Dr Alwyn Scarth

Dundee University Operatic Society

  • RU 109
  • Collection
  • 1975-2002
Students' Asscociation society: includes correspondence, minutes of general annual meeting and committee meetings. Programme booklets for productions, 'The Boyfriend', 'The Gondoliers', 'Mikado', 'Kiss me Kate', 'Iolanthe', 'Orpheus in the Underworld', 'Godspell', 'Guys and Dolls', 'Oklahoma', 'The Merry Widow'.

Dundee University Operatic Society

Department of Anatomy

  • Recs A 848
  • Collection
  • 1832-1989
Papers relating to the General Medical Council, minutes of Faculty meetings, departmental reports and publications, correspondence and other papers concerning subjects for dissection, financial records, correspondence relating to staff, students and a new medical school. Also papers and correspondence relating to staff, students, Dental Anatomy and the Medical Sciences Institute

Department of Anatomy


  • RU 773
  • Collection
  • 1969-1999
Items relating to Graduation Ceremonies (joint University of Dundee and University of St Andrews Ceremonies) 1969: Examples of tickets for different areas of the Caird Hall for 1 July graduation (16 pieces). Examples of invitations to various graduation events 30 June-1 July (5 pieces). Examples of acknowledgement receipt for invitation to Graduation Day (4 pieces). Academic Ceremonies for the Conferment of Degrees, Caird Hall, Tuesday 1 July 1969. 10.45am and 2.30pm. Graduation lists. Academic Ceremony for the Conferment of Degrees, Caird Hall, Tuesday 1 July 1969. 3.00pm. Graduation lists. Notes for Principals and Vice-Chancellors' Procession 10.45am. Notes for Principals and Vice-Chancellors' Procession 2.30pm. Notes for Principals and Vice-Chancellors' Procession 3.00pm. Notes for Members of Processions. 10.45am and 2.30pm. Notes for Members of Processions. 3.00pm. Procession Marshalling. Dinner 30 June. Table Plan. Luncheon. List of guests with table numbers. 1970: List of tickets of admission to Caird Hall. List of parking stickers to be issued. 1999: Photographs of 12th July 1999 Graduation by William Barr: Photographs of Honorary Graduate Gary Player and Principal Bryce (9 items). Photograph of the Aviva yacht, moored at Dundee harbour (1 item). Photographs of Graduation Procession outside Caird Hall (18 items). Photographs of Graduation Procession outside of Tower Building and Bonar Hall (19 items).

University of Dundee

Henry Jack, Reader, Department of Mathematics, University of Dundee

  • UR-SF 23
  • Collection
  • c. 1936-1980
Personal and academic papers relating to Henry Jack's time as an undergraduate student and whilst employed at University College Dundee, Queen's College and the University of Dundee, c1936 - c1971; reprints of publications, unpublished manuscripts and obituary, 1959-1980.

Henry Jack

University of Dundee: plans

  • UR-PL
  • Collection
  • c1908-1958
Bundle of Plans of various buildings of University College Dundee. Includes: Students Residences, Airlie Place, 1918-54; "Ardvreck", Perth Road, 1948 -49; West Park House, 1948; New Science Building, 1949; Chapel porch, Airlie Place, 1936; "Elmslea", Perth Road, 1950; old Library plan; Students' Union, 1946-48, Physics Dept. drains, 1908; Heathfield, 1970; Chemistry Dept., 1949-58; "Graybank", Perth Road, 1927-51.

University photographs: buildings, people and Tayside

  • CMS 1
  • Collection
  • c 1870s - c 1980s
Photographs of University buildings and of buildings in and around Dundee, with portraits, mainly of staff, plus photographs of groups of staff and of students. Also photographs recording royal visits, openings and other ceremonies

University of Dundee

William M. Dow (Bill Dow) Collection

  • MS 415
  • Collection
  • c.1990 - 2013
Contains a self-published book titled "Was Disaster built into the first Tay Bridge? - Surviving correspondence which went to the Inquiry but was NOT revealed". Photographs and notes of notes on loyal address from his time as a student representative council member in St Andrews, and CDs containing summaries of research, powerpoint presentations, with one presentation on the S Drive in electronic format only (MS 415/2/1).

William M. Dow (Bill Dow)