Douglas Constable

Douglas Constable's story inspired our 2021 Learning Competition called 'Letters to my Teacher'. But who was Douglas Constable?

He was a clever lad who excelled at his studies at St Mary's Melrose School in the Scottish Borders, where he studied until 1906. By the time the First World War broke out, Douglas had finished University and begun a promising publishing career, but he left his world of books to go to fight in the trenches of Belgium (Ypres Salient) and France with the Grenadier Guards.

Dispite all the death and carnage around him, he wrote to John Hamilton, his former Head Teacher at St Mary's Melrose School, to tell him what life was like on the front line.

Sadly, Douglas was killed in action during one of the 'Big Pushes' of The Battle of the Somme on 25th September 1916. He was only 26 years old.

When John Hamilton wrote of his former pupil's death, he called him 'one in a thousand'.


Read his letter

Click on link to read a transcript of Douglas Constable's letter in full, printed in the St Mary’s Melrose School Magazine circa 1914.
Letter transcript

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