FYT in Scotland - a brief history

Staff of FYT in Scotland

Prior to 1978 there was no staff in Scotland. The Scottish committee was responsible for the work.

Working with other committee members (such as Liz Hogarth, Jean Kemp and Janette Cowan), Jean Findlater, in a voluntary capacity, did a great deal of work - finding out about the frontier work that was happening in Scotland, keeping records, encouraging people, visiting youth work projects, identifying others with a similar concern.

Jim Cowie was appointed in 1978 as the first FYT Scotland staff worker. (Before that he was on the Scottish FYT Committee from 1972.) He was based at the St. Ninian's Centre in Crieff and worked part-time for FYT. Jim was, and is, a Church of Scotland minister. His responsibilities at St. Ninians included organising the Church of Scotland summer missions. (Jim is now minister of the Scots Kirk in Paris.)

Bob Johnston was Scottish Development Officer from 1979-1989. He had a particular responsibility for developing the camps' work. He was a school teacher by profession and had many years of experience with Scripture Union including camps, missions and school SU groups.
During Bob's time as Development Officer the work was diversified into direct work with young people through Frontier Youth Camps. Also 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. Details of the work done by the Community Programme staff is here.

Also for a few years during Bob's time in post FYT accepted responsibility to supervise the youth work in the building where our office was based at Muslin Street in Glasgow. Here is some information about that work.

Margaret Hunter
Margaret Hunter took over from Bob Johnston in 1989. Margaret was a qualified lawyer who had been involved in part-time youth work in a number of settings. She worked for FYT for four years. She worked closely with Graham Aitken who was Glasgow Presbytery Youth Advisor and chair of FYT-Scotland. Margaret now lives on the Isle of Man.

Feri Salvesen and Kathy Hooke were the workers after Margaret. They started in April 1993. Feri had the post of Coordinator and Kathy the post of Network Development Worker. Feri trained and worked as an engineer before joining the FYT staff. Feri was particularly responsible for producing the Scottish FYT Newsletter and for administration. Kathy left FYT in 1995 to take up the post of Glasgow Presbytery youth adviser.

A particular emphasis at this time was running regular local groups and youth worker lunches.

From March 1995 Christine Pettie, based in Galashiels, headed up the work in the East of Scotland on a part-time basis as Network Development Worker (East). Christine also was involved in running the GATE Project in Gala. Christine had a particular interest in detached work and in co-operative work with the police and with the NHS.

Tom Britton was Network Development Worker (West) in 1995. He left FYT to work with the Iona Community.

Linda Dunnett was in post for about two years from 1999. After that the work was headed-up for a while by Ian Campbell, and then on a part-time basis by Matt Hall, who also served as an FYT trustee.

Office base
Prior to Jim Cowie's appointment FYT in Scotland had a room in Scripture Union at 280 St Vincent Street in Glasgow.

During Jim Cowie's time the base of operations was at St Ninian's, Crieff

During most of Bob Johnston's 10 years on the staff the office base was at 36 Muslin Street in the Bridgeton area of Glasgow - in the premises of the YWCA of Scotland.

During the time Margaret Hunter was in post the office moved to Queen's Crescent in Glasgow, and later to Anderston Kelvingrove Church.

The office moved in about 2003 from Anderston Kelvingrove Church to the International Christian College in Glasgow.