Bill McMurtrie spent nearly 40 years in rugby-related media. He was The Herald’s rugby correspondent from 1966 till 1995. Thereafter he jumped the fence and became the Glasgow professional team’s media manager (1996-2005).
Bill was born in Paisley in January 1939 and was educated at Paisley Grammar School and Galashiels Academy. On his return to the west in 1956 to join the (then) Glasgow Herald sports staff he took up refereeing, mainly schools rugby.
While reporting on rugby, he travelled on Scotland and British Lions tours and built up a wide and deep knowledge of the game, not only in Scotland and Europe but also in other countries throughout the world with visits to New Zealand, South Africa, Australia, Fiji, Tonga, Japan, Zimbabwe, Canada, USA and Argentina.
He became Glasgow and District Rugby Union secretary and administrator in 1996. That role included the new professional team’s media liaison, and in the year running up to the 1999 Rugby World Cup he was seconded to the SRU’s press office. He had a further, though shorter sojourn in that Murrayfield department before and during the 2007 World Cup.
He has also provided statistics for the Scottish Rugby Record for more than 20 years. Since 2005 he has been the West Regional League clubs’ Championship Committee representative: for seven months in season 2011-2012 he was that committee’s interim convener.
He is also the Glasgow South clubs’ Scottish Rugby Council representative and a member of the Season Structure Working Party and the Murrayfield Museum Advisory Group. He was a member of the Standing Working Party on Governance (2007-2009 and 2010-2012). Outwith rugby Bill has been an Elder for more than 35 years in Orchardhill Parish Church, Giffnock.
Bill is a former president of Giffnock Tennis Club and is an honorary member of Tennis Scotland, and for 20 years from 1977 he was a member of the Scottish Wildlife Trust Council, including service as a vice-chairman and an executive committee member.