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Fraser Tallach

Samuel Fraser Tallach was born in Kames, Argyll, in May 1938, son of Rev James & Elizabeth Tallach. His father was the local minister of the Free Presbyterian Church, later to be minister at Stornoway, Lewis. He was educated at Dingwall Academy and Edinburgh University (MA, 1961), and ordained to the Free Presbyterian ministry in 1964, serving for two years at Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Returning to Scotland in 1967, when high blood pressure forced him to take a break, he was diagnosed with severe kidney disease, which led to a transplant – from a donation by his brother Cameron – in September 1969. In 1971 he became the first Free Presbyterian minister at Broadford, Skye, from where he moved in 1980 to Kinlochbervie and Scourie, Sutherland. He was elected in 1987 as Moderator of Synod.

He seceded from the Free Presbyterian Church in 1989 over the Lord Mackay of Clashfern affair, aligning himself with the breakaway Associated Presbyterian Churches. He moved to his final charge – Wick, Thurso and Strathy in Caithness – in 1995, and passed away in November 1998. John Macleod’s obituary in The Herald newspaper described him as ‘a grand preacher . . . an accomplished singer . . . an honourable and godly man’.

Fraser Tallach’s story is told in Fraser: Not a Private Matter, partly in his own words, but with contributions from his brother John and nephew David.