Arthur Laing

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A. L. Laing as Provost of the Lerwick Town Council.
Image kindly supplied by the Shetland Islands Council

Arthur Laurenson Laing (b. 22 May 1858, Gulberwick, d. 19 February 1942, Lerwick) was a pharmacist and founder of A. L. Laing, a chemist which still exists in Shetland. He was a County Councillor for Lerwick South between 1901 and 1910, while also serving as a Lerwick Town Councillor from 1888 to 1913, spending the last 3 years as Provost.

Laing first began his career as a pharmacist in February 1873. Upon completing his apprenticeship he moved to Edinburgh and became a junior assistant in George Street, late moving to Greenwich, Sandwich and London. He moved to Hove as a dispensing chemist, and from there he moved to Buxton then Edinburgh and Berwickshire. When in 1886 101 Commercial Street became vacant, Laing sold up his business in Berwickshire and moved up, opening on 6 March of that same year. He opened another shop in Commercial Street in 1905, following the success of his business. In the Council, he was a Baillie and held this position from 1904 until he became provost in 1910. He was appointed Justice of the Peace in 1910. He also was enthusiastic in the Volunteers, joining the 1st Zetland Rifle Volunteer Corps. When the 7th Volunteer Battalion Gordon Highlanders formed in 1901, he was one of the first to join and hold the rank of Sergeant in this unit, and when this later became the Shetland Companies Gordon Highlanders, Laing held the position of Lieutenant.

As a young man he joined the Independent Order of Rechabites and was the secretary for St Columba's Tent in Lerwick, and performed the same role in the Zetland District. He was a Church of Scotland member and was appointed an elder in 1902 for St. Columba's Church.

Political Career

Lerwick Town Council

Zetland County Council

External Links

Preceded by
Arthur Porteous
Arthur Porteous Headshot.png
for Lerwick Town Council

Succeeded by
Robert Stout
Robert Stout Headshot.png
Leaders of the Lerwick Town Council
Councillors Arthur Edmondston (1818-1823) • Charles Ogilvy Snr (1823-1827) • William Spence (1827-1832) • Charles Ogilvy Jr (1832-1844) • Joseph Leask (1844-1847) • William Sievwright Snr (1847-1856) • Charles Duncan (1856-1862) • Joseph Leask (1862-1865) • Charles Duncan (1865-1874) • William Sievwright Jr (1874-1876) • Thomas Cameron (1876-1883) • John Robertson (1883-1890) • Charles Robertson (1890-1895) • John Leisk (1895-1904) • James Goudie (1904-1907) • Arthur Porteous (1907-1910) • Arthur Laing (1910-1913) • Robert Stout (1913-1915) • Peter Goodlad (1915-1920) • Robert D. Ganson (1920-1924) • James Laing (1924-1927) • John Sinclair (1927-1930) • William Sinclair (1930-1933) • Robert Ollason (1933-1936) • James A. Smith (1936-1941) • Magnus Shearer (1941-1946) • James Aitken (1946-1950) • Robert A. Anderson (1950-1953) • George Burgess (1953-1956) • William Conochie (1956-1959) • Robert Blance (1959-1962) • Harry Gray (1962-1965) • Andrew Nicolson (1965-1967) • Eric Gray (1967-1971) • Bill Smith (1971-1974) • James Taylor (1974-1975)
Zetland County Council
Preceded by
James Goudie
James M Goudie Headshot.png
Member for
Lerwick South

Succeeded by
Charles Stout
Lerwick South County Councillors
Councillors Arthur Laurenson (1890-1890) • James Goudie (1891-1901) • Arthur Laing (1901-1910) • Charles Stout (1910-1922) • James Laing (1922-1929)