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Sir Harry Lauder


1870 - 1950

Singer and music hall entertainer. Lauder came from a poor family to become a world-famous entertainer. Although born in Portobello, the family relocated to Arbroath on the death of his father. By the age of 14, he had moved once again to Hamilton to work as a miner. Lauder did much to foster an image of the stereotypical Scotsman as kilt-wearing, whisky drinking and careful with money. Known also for his crooked walking stick, Lauder was well loved at home and abroad for songs such as "Roamin' in the Gloamin", "Keep Right on to the End of the Road" and "A wee Doch an Dorus".

Having regularly toured internationally (he visited the USA on twenty-two occasions), Lauder became one of the first super-star entertainers, recognised throughout the world. He was knighted in 1919 and received the Freedom of the City of Edinburgh in 1927. He retired to Lauder Ha in Strathaven, where he died. Lauder's funeral was a grand affair, reported internationally in the press. Flowers were received from across the globe, including from Winston Churchill and Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. He is buried in Bent Cemetery (Hamilton). His name is remembered in the modern Portobello bypass, the Sir Harry Lauder Road.


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