Douglas Finlayson 1923 – 2003

Douglas Finlayson was born on 3rd Feb 1923 in Edinburgh.  He was the only child of his parents John and Mary.  John died when Douglas was 4 years old.  Having won a scholarship, he attended the George Herriot School in Edinburgh.  He joined the Royal Navy upon leaving school.  He was trained in the new Radar systems and served aboard a number of ships.  He was torpedoed once and luckily for us, he survived unscathed.  When the war ended, he studied psychology and worked for a while as an educational psychologist.  Later he joined the staff of the Education Department in Liverpool University.

Douglas contributed articles to a number of journals, which brought him to the attention o the Psychological Service of the Dept. of Education here in Ireland.  As a result, he was invited to work in the late seventies and early eighties.   He also came to the attention of the Cork Social and Health Education Project.  He has facilitated groups on their behalf for over 25 years.

At the age of 65, Douglas retired from his post in the University.  Shortly afterwards he spent more than half of each year in Cork where he set up a private practice in Psychotherapy.  He also worked as consultant to a number of other groups and worked as a Tutor on the Psychotherapy degree course in the Cork Institute of Technology.  He maintained this highly successful practice until June 2003.  In July he had surgery and was found to have cancer.  This led to his death on 4th November, 2003.

Douglas was a man of great integrity.  He had remarkable skills of observation.  He had a wonderful analytical mind.  He had a deep compassion for his fellow human beings.  He had a playful sense of the ridiculous.  I learned many many things from him in our work together.  Douglas I miss you.  He is survived by his wife Elsa and his children Rhona, Isla and Magnus.  All those who have met him and worked with him here in Cork greatly and painfully miss him.  Douglas we wish you well on this stage of your journey.

Brendan M. Connolly