It is with sadness that we report the passing of renowned North East broadcaster, athlete, writer singer,  song writer and farmer, Charlie Allan.

Charlie Allan

From Frieda Morrison – Chair Doric Board.

‘I worked with Charlie at BBC Aberdeen for two special and unforgettable years – producing and presenting Scottish Farming News.

I have so many happy memories – and some memories of our exploits and adventures that I’ll maybe publish one day, but maybe not this time.  Charlie was never happier than with us all celebrating and singing. Wherever he went, there was fun, and whatever room he was in – people knew he was there.  He leaves us with a song in our heart.’

From  Doric Board member, Jim Brown MBE.  

‘I first knew Charlie through Highland Games and he was so different from the normal heavy athlete.– funny, innovative tricky but extremely able. He was so proud of winning the all rounders trophy at Aboyne and the World Caber Championship at Aberdeen. He had a foot in traditional North East farming and the modern era and exploited both in his writing. As one of the few modern ballad writers, his compositions are much admired and regularly sung at Festivals around Scotland. I chaired the Grassic Gibbon Centre at Arbuthnott and Charlie readily helped me with concerts and after dinner speeches. I recall a packed Centre when Charlie agreed to be interviewed about his very full and varied life. Charlie and Fiona were great Dinner companions– just full of fun and wit.

Perhaps Charlie’s greatest attributes were that despite his immense talent and achievements, he was humble and readily laughed at himself.’

Jim Brown MBE  is past  President of the Royal Scottish Highland Games Association, Chairman of the Grampian Highland Games Association and Chairman of the Board of the Grassic Gibbon Centre.

Charlie Allan…

Blue Grey Coo…

The Blue Grey Coo, by Charlie Allan


From CD Booklet ” The Best of Charlie Allan”

Charlie Allan is a Lad o’ Pairts. He was born in Stirling, brought up in Aberdeenshire, got some of his schooling in Devon and went to Aberdeen University. There he led the pack at rugby, captained the basketball team, batted number six, putt the shot, high jumped and anchored the relay team, while playing Junior football for Rosemount and senior for Deveronvale (twice) and edited the student magazine.

Then he taught economics at Glasgow, St Andrews and Strathclyde Universities, where his academic writings were translated into Japanese and Spanish and included such exciting titles as The Demand for Herring – a Single Equation Model. Charlie also wrote a book on the Scottish Highland Games, having been a world Caber Champion in 1972 and travelled the world as a professional athlete.

In 1974 he gave up academic life to keep the family farm going. It was then , as a farmer, that he began to suffer, despite showing champion cattle at the Highland Show and the Calgary stampede, and topping the famous Perth and Edmonton bull sales.

These recordings were part of his desperate attempts to make a living at Little Ardo in the face of his inadequate husbandry. He also took a job on Radio Scotland, where for five years he produced the daily Scottish Farming News.