The Past is a Foreign Country

Published in 2014, our publication on Scottish athletics, The Past is a Foreign Country, covering a history of athletics in Scotland through the stories of the athletes themselves, is now available to read and download for free.

Just click on the photo opposite and a pdf copy of the book will open up. The pdf copy has been updated to correct a few small errors that have been identified since publication.

At the time of publication, here's what the newspapers said:

The Herald

The Scotsman

Athletics Weekly

And here's what some early reaction from readers was:

"It's a GREAT book! I'm loving it, and a total bargain too. Thoroughly recommend it to anyone with an interest in athletics."

"An outstanding work. It is presented in a fashion to appeal to an audience beyond the specialists, which is terrific."

The book contains chapters covering the careers of Allan Wells; Eric Liddell; Wyndham Halswelle; Tom McKean; Liz McColgan & Yvonne Murray; high jumpers Alan Paterson, Crawford Fairbrother and Geoff Parsons; Ian McCafferty, Ian Stewart and Lachie Stewart; Frank Clement, John Robson and Graham Williamson; Lee McConnell; Tom Nicolson, Chris Black, Rosemary Payne and Meg Ritchie; marathoners Dunky Wright, Joe McGhee and Jim Alder; and ultra-distance man Don Ritchie.

There's a chapter looking at the Commonwealth Games of 1970 and 1986, both held in Scotland, together with the preparation for Glasgow 2014.

And this is backed up by 100 extensive profiles of athletes from all eras of the sport: including pre-World War 1 athletes such as John McGough, Gerard Anderson and Henry Macintosh; the 1920s and 1930s through Jock Dalrymple, Alan Hunter and David Young; the 1940s and 1950s with Duncan Clark, Pat Devine and Andrew Forbes; the 1960s and 1970s with Helen Golden, Don Halliday, Les Piggot and Laurie Bryce; the 1980s and 1990s stars such as Elliot Bunney, Anne Clarkson and Allister Hutton; to the present time and Chris Baillie, Jamie Quarry, Lynsey Sharp.

We are sure there will be something for everyone, no matter your area of interest ... and it will certainly bring back memories. 

Should you want a hard copy of this lovely publication, it is available at a discounted £6, plus £4 p&p in the UK, (payable to SATS) from Arnold Black,19 Millbrae Crescent, Glasgow G42 9UW. For details of overseas postage and other payment options, email



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