Brian Finnie – an Obituary

It is with much sadness that we have to report the death of Brian Finnie, who was a much-respected member of Forfar Sailing Club for many years, and a skilled Secretary for quite a number of them.

Brian had graduated in Electrical Engineering from Manchester University, gained a Ph.D. from Edinburgh University, and worked for various companies as a Design and Development Engineer, including in the Far East. As well as taking up sailing at university, he was also a glider pilot, and, being the meticulous person he was, seemed to have put much thought and research into his dinghy-sailing. But he was also keen to help novice sailors with hints and tips which would later prove useful to them for racing. He one year organised and ran a short training course for Club sailors on Thursday evenings, getting the sailors to practise certain manoeuvres. He was also a member of Tummel SC and, briefly, Loch Earn SC.

In Committee, he was the archetypal Secretary, at the Commodore’s elbow, prodding him with advice on procedure, legal facts, and general information, all helped no doubt by his sharp mind and accurate memory. His advice was always reliable. He was also Secretary of TYCA for a number of years, and was their Webmaster as well as ours.

Brian’s preferred boat was the Europe, of which he kept at least two operating examples. He was the Europe class Webmaster and on its national committee as Scottish rep. He was also for a time on the RYA Scotland Dinghy Committee. Two or three years ago he was diagnosed with serious illness, which put paid to his sailing. (It was typical of him that he donated all his sailing clothing and paraphernalia to the Club.) And further incurable illness set in, just as he was making progress with the previous one.

Brian left a positive mark. To this day, Forfar SC benefits directly from some of his previous work. For good reason he was not someone to be easily forgotten. Brian is survived by his wife Margaret, who was also a good friend to the Club, assisting at Club events and providing quality baking. Our thoughts are with her and their family.