A brief history of Frontier Youth Trust
in Scotland

Introduction

FYT was founded in London in 1964. (David Sheppard, England Test cricketer and later Bishop of Liverpool, was one of the founders.) It became part of Scripture Union in 1966, and this link to SU continued until 1985.

FYT is a national movement which supports and resources Christians working with young people at risk - young people often at odds with themselves, society and our churches. Working with these young people is hard and demanding and often leads to the workers feeling isolated and misunderstood. FYT supports these workers by acting as a network agency as well as offering advice, training and consultancy. (Jim Punton gave a good description of FYT in an articlePDF in the SU Scotland magazine Tell in Autumn 1972.)

Full information about the current work of Frontier Youth Trust can be be found on the FYT website.


Why these web pages?
The purpose of this small web site is simply to capture some of the history of FYT in Scotland, particularly from 1970-2000.


FYT in Scotland - a quick overview of these years


Jean Kemp
FYT started to have an identity in Scotland from 1967. John Butler, General Secretary of SU in Scotland, had the task of creating a presence for FYT in Scotland. And the first mention of FYT in the Scottish press is in an article in the Glasgow Herald in June 1967 in which John Butler mentions the work of FYT.


Jean Findlater
Liz Hogarth and Jean Findlater were instrumental in helping to get things started up at the invitation of SU-Scotland. Like-minded people were identified (including Jean Kemp who had been on a student placement at the Mayflower Centre where David Sheppard was based) and a Scottish FYT Committee was set up in 1969, with it's first meeting on 29th January 1970.

Conferences were held in these first few years with Michael Eastman, FYT's Secretary and Development Officer, coming up from London for these. It was through these events that like-minded people in Scotland first became aware of FYT and its purpose.

For a few years Jean Findlater headed up the work in a voluntary capacity - linking people together, making FYT known, and providing support and encouragement to those involved in "frontier" youth work.

Also from 1971 visits from Jim Punton, FYT Education and Training Officer, helped to make FYT known to the Christian public in Scotland through a number of successful conferences and training events. In this way people were identified whose thinking was in tune with that of FYT.

People involved in "frontier" work were linked together, and were given help in their own youth work situations.

Jim Cowie was appointed in 1978 as the first FYT Scottish staff worker. He was based at the St. Ninian's Centre in Crieff and worked part-time for FYT.

With the appointment of Bob Johnston in 1979 the work was consolidated and also diversified into direct work with young people through Frontier Youth Camps. At this time a number of workers were employed through the government's Community Programme - providing help to local youth work projects, producing resources, and looking after equipment for the camps. (HerePDF is what one Community Programme worker said about her work.)

Training courses and conferences were run, individuals supported, and relevant publications produced.

In 1989 Margaret Hunter took over as the FYT worker in Scotland, and was in post for 4 years. The workers immediately after that were Feri Salvesen and Kathy Hooke. And after that Linda Dunnett.

 

← Further details about staff, committee, events, camps etc can be found via the menu in the left column.