Clan Hay members of a certain vintage will be sorry to learn of the death, aged 93, of Archie Murray, one of our greatest and best loved supporters over a period of many years.

Although he was a Murray, and long serving Secretary of the Clan Murray Association, he was also the best friend of the late Kenneth McLennan Hay, formerly Commissioner of Clan Hay.  As such, Archie was not only a member of the Clan Hay Society, but a most loyal attender at all of the society’s events during the 1970s, 80s, 90s and beyond.

Here, Kenneth’s widow Fiona McDonald Hay shares a memorial of her (and our) great friend.

“I knew Archie from the late sixties, when he joined the Young United Clans.  This was organised by Kenneth Hay.  It was an organisation where youngsters could learn to dance and socialise.

“Archie was born in Australia on 16 June 1929.   Archie had a brother called John, who was older than Archie and both of them returned to the UK with their parents.  John and Archie settled in Edinburgh in a large house in Lauder Road.  John was married and divorced and was interested in property.  Archie went to Durham University and trained in English law.  He also joined his brother dealing in property in Edinburgh.

“Archie was best man at my wedding to Kenneth, and he also joined the Order of St Lazarus, where investitures were held at St Vincent’s Church once a year.  Archie who was a Murray, became secretary to the Clan Murray Society and overseas secretary as well.  He enjoyed singing and joined a choir in St Vincent for the Sunday services.  He also liked to go on holiday and would take us in his car to the highlands for a week in the autumn.  We did not have a car.

“It was in St Vincent’s church that he met Kitty, a widow, who had two sons from a previous marriage.  Kitty and Archie got married in June1986, and settled in Peebles, where one of the sons was teaching at the high school.  We did not see them so much living in the Borders, but I think they were both were very happy together.  Some years later, Kitty’s health deteriorated and in 2015, she passed away.

“I invited Archie to a Royal Celtic Society luncheon at the Black Tower Castle Hotel as my guest, not knowing that Archie was already a member.  He always attended the luncheons and talks that the society gave, but as he became older, he had to give up driving and found travelling harder.

“It was on 3 November 2022, that Archie had a heart attack and was taken to the Borders Hospital, where he passed away.  He was a charming man and a good friend to me and Kenneth.”