Clan Weir People
William Douglas Weir, 1st Viscount Weir GCB (1877 – 1959)
Scottish industrialist born in Glasgow. During World War I he converted his factories to produce explosive shells, and in 1919 he became Minister of Munitions. He was made a Knight in 1917. In 1918 he became President of the Air Council and raised to the peerage as Baron Weir. He was appointed a Privy Counsellor in the same year.
In 1925 Weir headed a government committee to plan the rationalisation of the United Kingdom’s electrical power industry, and his conclusions led to the Electricity (Supply) Act 1926 and the creation of the National Grid.
In 1938 he was created Viscount Weir of Eastwood.
Sir John Weir, GCVO 1879 – 1971)
Physician Royal to several twentieth century monarchs. Born in Paisley Renfrewshire Scotland, Dr Weir was to become Physician Royal to King George V, King Edward VIII, King George VI, Queen Elizabeth II, and King Haakon VII of Norway, whose wife Maud was the youngest daughter of King Edward VII.
Weir received his medical education first at Glasgow University MB ChB 1907, and then in Chicago.Weir returned to the London Homeopathic Hospital as Consultant Physician in 1910, and was appointed the Compton-Burnett Professor of Materia Medica in 1911. He rose to become President of the Faculty of Homeopathy in 1923.
Weir spoke on homeopathy before the Royal Society of Medicine in 1932, and was knighted by King George V that same year. The renovated Manchester Homoeopathic Institute and Dispensary was opened in Oxford Street by Sir John Weir in May 1939. Weir said in an “address: homeopathy…is no religion, no sect, no fad, no humbug…remedies do not act directly on disease; they merely stimulate the vital reactions of the patient, and this causes him to cure himself.” Having advanced through all levels of the Royal Victorian Order he was, as a rare distinction, awarded the Royal Victorian Chain in 1947, possibly as a mark of the medical care he gave to the ailing King George VI.
Robert Stanley Weir, FRSC, (1856 – 1926)
Canadian judge and poet most famous for writing the English lyrics to O Canada, the national anthem of Canada. He was educated as a teacher and lawyer and considered one of the leading experts of the day on Quebec’s municipal civil law. He was appointed a municipal court judge and a judge for the Exchequer Court of Canada.
Robert Stanley Weir was born in Hamilton, Canada the son of William Park Weir and Helen Craig Smith, who had emigrated from Scotland to Canada in 1852. Weir studied at McGill Normal School, Montreal, and at the age of 19, was appointed principal of Sherbrooke Street School. He continued his studies at McGill University earning his Bachelor of Civil Law in 1880 and a Doctor of Civil Law in 1897. He was called to the bar in 1881.
From 1881, Weir practised law in Montreal. In 1898, he was one of several eminent advocates appointed to revise the charter of the City of Montreal. It is believed that, in particular, he wrote many of the sections relating to expropriations and the power of the city to pass by-laws.
On May 6, 1899, he was appointed Recorder for Montreal. During this time as a recorder, he also taught liturgics and jurisprudence in the Congregational College of Canada, which was affiliated with McGill University. Weir later served as a municipal court judge and was considered an expert on the historical aspects of municipal law. Lastly, he was appointed a judge for the Exchequer Court of Canada. In 1923, he was honoured as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.
In 1908, Weir wrote English lyrics for O Canada while at his summer home, Cedarhurst, in time to honour the 300th anniversary of the founding of Quebec City.
Mary (Molly) Weir, (1910 – 2004)
Scottish stage actress, best known as the long-running character Hazel the McWitch the Scottish Ghost in the BBC TV series, Rentaghost. She was the sister of naturalist and broadcaster Tom Weir.
Born in Glasgow and brought up in the Springburn area of the city, Weir began in amateur dramatics. In her early professional career, Weir had been a well-known radio actress, featuring in many comedy shows, such as ITMA. She made her film debut in 1949, and had a regular role as the housekeeper in the early television sitcom, Life With The Lyons. During the 1970s she became famous as a writer, with several volumes of best-selling memoirs, notably, Shoes Were For Sunday.
In the 1970s she was one of the presenters of Teatime Tales, a television series broadcast by STV in which she recalled her childhood. The series also featured Lavinia Derwent and Cliff Hanley.
Thomas (Tom) Weir MBE, (1914 – 2006)
Scottish climber, author and broadcaster. He was best known for his long-running television series Weir’s Way.
Weir was born in Springburn, Glasgow, and was the younger brother of actress Molly Weir. After service in the Royal Artillery during World War II, he worked as a surveyor for the Ordnance Survey before commencing a full-time career as a climber, writer and photographer. In 1950 he was a member of the first post-war Himalayan expedition and, in 1952, was one of the first to explore the previously closed mountain ranges of Nepal, east of Kathmandu.
Weir became a pioneering campaigner for the protection of the Scottish environment. He hosted the Scottish Television series Weir’s Way, for which he won the Scottish Television ‘Personality of the Year Award’ in 1978. He was appointed MBE in 1976.
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