Presidents past and present (from left): Frank Quinault (2007-8), Bruce Alexander (1985-6), Ewen Sparks (1999-2000), Caroline Rochford (2019-20), Alan S. Morrison (2018-19), Ronnie Murphy (1991-2) and Stephen Westwood (2010-12).

Present and past members of St Andrews Business Club were joined by joined guests for a special dinner-dance at the Old Course Hotel last Friday to celebrate the club’s 70 years.

Formed on January 24 1950 by ex-Provost George Bruce at the suggestion of local businessman David Thomson, the club has worked since to promote and assist trade and business education in the town as well as North-East Fife by holding meetings, talks and visiting local businesses roughly monthly between September and April each year, extended to June since last year.

Speakers have included Sir Tom Farmer, Scotland rugby captain Andy Irvine, Sir Menzies Campbell MP, former Lord Advocate Lord Mulholland, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, Lord Ian Duncan and William Dowson, Bank of England Agent for Scotland.

Friday’s event brought together seven of the club’s 63 Presidents and past Presidents Frank Quinault, Stephen Westwood and Ewen Sparks spoke briefly of its activities in decades past after being introduced by the current President, Caroline Rochford. She became only its second female President in May last year.

In her welcome Caroline recalled the genesis of the Club, the debate over the admission of women as members, its subsequent work and meeting places, past speakers and the creation of a new student ‘daughter’ club for University of St Andrews students last year by its marketing communications interns, Sanaa Sachdev and Stanley Parker.


Caroline added: “It is such an achievement for a small business club to have reached its 70th anniversary and be so successful, particularly now with the recent introduction of our ‘daughter’ club within the University of St Andrews. I’d like to thank everyone for making this event such a special occasion.”

A raffle raised £534 for the Refugee Survival Trust, which Food For Support – a fundraising initiative co-founded by Stanley Parker – supports year-round through donations from special dishes sold at local eateries. The prizes were donated by The Old Course Hotel, Fairmont St Andrews, Scaramanga, Fife Cultural Trust, West Port Print & Design and Luvians.

The club’s next event, open to all, is its annual Inspiring Women event on March 4 at Rufflets St Andrews. The speakers are award-winning milliner Rachael Nixon and HR consultant Rachel Weiss, who founded the Menopause Café in 2017.

Anyone wanting to attend, is asked to book via Eventbrite. A full list of this season’s events can be found at

Full details of all the club’s events, most of which are now open to non-members, and how to join are available on its website at and Eventbrite.