The Charles Murray Memorial Fund

Shortly after the death of Charles Murray, it was decided that a memorial marking his lasting legacy to the literature of North-east Scotland should be established. A Trust was set up for the purpose of raising money to fund the erection of the Memorial Gates at the Murray Park at Alford and, in the longer term, to encourage attention to Doric literature in schools.

Alex Keith
Alex Keith

The original Trustees were The Right Hon Lord Forbes, Alex Keith, Miss M McCreadie, Miss J E Mathieson, Miss Nan Shepherd, Major M V Hay of Seaton, Principal Sir Thomas M Taylor, James Gordon, William L Gavin, Baillie James A Mackie, Mitchell H Williamson and W R D McNaughton.

The Trustees have been instrumental in continuing the publication of Murray's works with the appearance of his uncollected work in The Last Poems in 1969 and, ten years later, Hamewith, the Complete Poems of Charles Murray, which brought together in a single volume the material in Last Poems and the collections which had appeared during Murray's lifetime.

The Trust's support for the provision of prizes for the recitation of Doric poetry in primary schools has helped ensure that successive generations of children are aware of the rich heritage of Doric literature.

More recently, the Trustees have launched a CD of 32 of Murray's poems with readers drawn mainly from their own number. Excerpts from the CD are featured on the pages of this site.

The next exciting current project being sponsored by the Trustees is the publication of a new edition of Murray's works under the editorship of Dr Colin Milton. The new edition will include, for the first time, those Scots poems from Murray's first 'suppressed' volume, A Handful of Heather which did not appear in later collections.

The current Trustees are:

  • Gordon Hay, Longside (Chairman)
  • Ronald Wadsworth, Aberdeen (Secretary & Treasurer)
  • James Gordon, Alford
  • James Robertson, Aberdeen
  • Alex Scott, Alford
  • Robbie Shepherd, Aberdeen
  • Dr Colin Milton, Edinburgh
  • Dr Ian Russell, Aberdeen
  • Mrs Cecilia Penny, Stuartfield
  • Mrs Isobel Balfour, Alford
  • Robin Angus, Edinburgh
  • Robert Watt, Fraserburgh
Alex Keith
Letter from Charles Murray’s son, Bill Murray
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Letter and transcript from Charles Murray’s son, Bill Murray, to the grandparents of Stuart Rogers (great-nephew of Charles Murray), written shortly after the Hamewith Centenary celebrations,described in detail in the letter. Thanks to Stuart Rogers for the letter and transcription.