David Millar Craig

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David Millar-Craig
Born (1878-09-10)10 September 1878
23 Torphichen Street, Edinburgh
Died 1965 (aged 86)
Somerset, England
Resting place
Beercrocombe (St. James) Churchyard, Somerset
Nationality Scottish
Alma mater
  • Edinburgh University
  • Leipzig Conservatoire of Music
Occupation BBC Assistant Controller (Scotland)
Successor David Cleghorn Thomson
Spouse(s) Winifred Margaret ?? (m.1953)
  • John Millar Craig
  • Anne Balfour Marshall

Captain David Millar-Craig (1878–1965) was the BBC's first Controller for Scotland, in charge of all the Corporation's Scottish radio stations between February 1924 and April 1926.


His father, John Millar Craig, was for 20 years conductor of the Glasgow Select Choir. His brother, W. M. Millar Craig, was legal secretary to the Lord Advocate.

David Millar Craig had considerable knowledge of musical and educational affairs. He was educated at Edinburgh University and studied for three and a half years at the Leipzig Conservatoire of Music in Germany, where he was awarded a diploma.

He served as a Captain in the 5th Royal Scots during the First World War, but after being gassed and wounded he took on other duties at the front. He was commanding officer in charge of the service which spread propaganda in the enemy lines by paper balloons which had such a remarkable effect on the enemy's morale in the latter stages of the war.

He had a child, Hamish Millar Craig, who was born on 25 September 1918.

David Millar Craig was well-known among Edinburgh music audiences for his violoncello playing.[1] Immediately prior to joining the BBC he was writing the analytical notes for Scottish orchestral concerts in Glasgow and Edinburgh.[2]

BBC career

Millar Craig joined the BBC on 4 February 1924[3] as Assistant Controller (Scotland), to co-ordinate the work of the Glasgow (5SC) and Aberdeen (2BD) stations, and of the new Edinburgh relay station (2EH) when it opened three months later. His responsibilities also included the supervision of the Belfast Station in Northern Ireland. The Glasgow Herald described his duties:

When the new station in Edinburgh has been established it will be Mr Craig's duty to ensure that the best use is made of the programme resources of the three Scottish stations. His primary business will be to arrange for co-operation between them so that when any one station has a particularly attractive item to offer it will be made available by means of simultaneous broadcasting for the two others. In addition he is to exercise a general control over broadcasting in Scotland and to ensure that, while all possible advantage is taken of services offered by the London station, the importance of meeting national tastes is duly considered.[4]

In April 1926 he was moved to the music department at head office.

In October 1928 he was appointed music editor of the Radio Times.[5] He moved in 1932 to become Programme Editor at World-Radio, the BBC's weekly foreign and technical journal, sifting through programme listings from radio stations across the world and picking out highlights for listeners.[6]

Musical activities

David Millar Craig published translations of songs, choruses and a book on music from German. He also wrote libretti for ballet, as well as biographical sketches of concert celebrities.


  1. 'Piano and Cello Recital', Edinburgh Evening News, 1 April 1920, 4.
  2. 'New BBC official for Scotland' , Glasgow Herald, 11 February 1924, 6.
  3. Ariel, June 1937, 32.
  4. 'Co-ordinating Scottish services', Glasgow Herald, 6 March 1924, 3.
  5. Jennifer Ruth Doctor, The BBC and Ultra-Modern Music, 1922-1936 (??), 81.
  6. Ariel, October 1937, 12.
Media offices
First Scottish Director
Succeeded by
David Cleghorn Thomson