Dr Henry Fairlie

Personal details

Dr Henry Fairlie MBChB FFARCS DA

16/09/1916 to 19/03/2019

Place of birth: Glasgow

Nationality: British

CRN: 500366

Education and qualifications

General education

Glasgow High School; Glasgow University Medical School

Primary medical qualification(s)

MBChB, Glasgow, 1939

Initial Fellowship and type

FFARCS by Election

Year of Fellowship


Other qualification(s)

DA(RCP&S), 1948

Professional life and career

Postgraduate career

After qualifying was house surgeon & house physician in the Western Infirmary, Glasgow and house surgeon at the city’s Royal Maternity Hospital, the work of all three posts involving the administration of anaesthetics. He was in the RAMC from 1941-1946 (Lieutenant, then Captain), serving in Africa (becoming fluent in Swahili) and the Far East. He then spent a year undertaking PG education in anaesthesia at Glasgow University before being appointed anaesthetist to Vale of Leven Hospital & Glasgow Eye Infirmary in 1947.

He was promoted to SHMO in 1948, thereafter also working at Beatson Hospital & the Royal Hospital for Sick Children (RHSC) in Glasgow. In 1954 he became a consultant based at the Western Infirmary with duties also at RHSC (to 1975), Royal Samaritan & Royal Maternity Hospitals. He retired in 1981.

Professional interests and activities

Interests at various stages in his career included neonatal anaesthesia, staffing in the specialty and reactions to bone cement in hip replacement surgery. He was active in, and president of, both the Glasgow & West of Scotland (1966) and Scottish Societies (1975) of Anaesthesia.

Other biographical information

His father was also Henry, an anaesthetist, founder member and president of the Scottish Society (1923 & 1932), and Henry Jr, in excellent form in his 99th year, was the senior past president at the Society’s Centenary meeting in 2015. Married to Morag Smeal, they had two daughters. Leisure activities included tennis, golf, angling, Scottish country dancing and bird watching.

Author and sources

Author: Prof Tony Wildsmith

Sources and any other comments: [1] Boulton Form [2] Website of the Scottish Society of Anaesthetists (https://www.ssa.scot/) where Dr Fairlie can be seen in the photograph of past presidents (front row, fourth from left)