top of page

A Century of Tradition

Alastair Macfarlane  


Our Jubilee President was born in the world's golfing capital St Andrews and educated at Dollar Academy. Apprenticed to the Royal Insurance Company on leaving school, he went to Venezuela for his Company in 1967, came to Brazil, commencing with a short stay in Rio in 1969 during which he served on the Society's Committee and was transferred to Sao Paulo the following year. A Committee member in 1971, 1972 and again ex-oficio 1975, Alastair was elected to the Vice-Presidency In 1973 and became President the year after.

During Alastair's year of office, the President's badge of office was acquired and miniatures of this presented to all living Past Presidents. A special commemorative St Andrew's cross pennant was also given to all Past Presidents who attended the Jubilee Banquet.

Another item which has proved to have been the most popular and successful innovation of Alastair's Jubilee year Presidency, and perhaps of any other year, was the inauguration of our monthly lunches. which are held on the First Tuesday of each month.

Being the Jubilee anniversary of the Society, 1974 was one of the most active in its history. Apart from presiding over our traditional events, Alastair's year of office was marked by the Jubilee ceilidh, a World Cup Sweepstake in aid of charity and a very successful “SAVE THE SPOTLIGHT” evening, during which a Liza Minelli TV spectacular was shown on film to a large enthusiastic audience which later enjoyed a member of the Brazilian equivalent of "The Magic Circle" performing his act - which Incidentally, included "sawing In half" Alastair's spouse, Miffy. None the worse for this experience, Miffy has since-provided Alastair with three fine sons, and future members of the Society, Sandy, Angus and Murray.

If Archie McLean, our eighteenth President, was the colony's “Mister Soccer”, Alastair Macfarlane can surely lay claim to having been its “Mister Rugby” and whether playing for the new club he helped to found. “The Barbarians” or for Brazil in the South American 5 Nations Tournament decided in São Paulo in 1973, this brawny but skilful Scot was always well to the fore in a most competent, capable but sportsman like manner. To this day, Alastair's fame as a repository and performer of those deathless ditties which traditionally accompany the sampling of the product of the local brewery during after-match revelries and which are known as “rugger songs", is widely recognised from the River Plate to the Tiete.

As befits one hailing from his birthplace, Alastair plays golf, winning the Quaich cup in 1991, as also squash and occasionally he has even seen his way to turn out for the Society football (round ball variety) side.

Being the total enthusiast that he is in whatever he tackles, Alastair Macfarlane would have made a fine president of the Society on any occasion, but it made him the ideal President for our 50th anniversary year. In later years, he became renowned for `enthusiastically persuading` candidates to take up the position of President. `as part of your duty to the Society`!

bottom of page