The SNP are sorry to have to announce the sad passing of former Bo’ness Councillor, Robert Eaglesham, who died on 19 July at home after a long fight against illness aged 76.
Robert, who was perhaps better known to the wider Bo’ness public as the husband of former long serving Councillor, Beth Eaglesham, pre-dated Beth’s election when he was elected to Falkirk District Council in 1977 serving until 1980.
After that Robert became a respected backroom organiser and is widely credited with much of the success of the heavyweight SNP team of John and Harry Constable and his own wife, Beth, as election agent for all three candidates.
Poor health restricted Robert’s political activities in later years. He suffered a number of strokes but this didn’t stop him from working tirelessly behind the scenes for the two causes he loved most, Scottish independence and the promotion of Bo’ness.
The most recently elected SNP Councillor for Bo’ness, Sandy Turner, paid tribute to Robert,
“When I took on the role of Bo’ness SNP Organiser it was to Robert that I always turned to for advice or support. I was astonished at first by his knowledge and commitment to the party, neither of which wavered during the years we worked together.
Over this period of time we became close friends and I feel this loss greatly.”
As well as being a well known figure in local politics Robert was well liked and respected throughout the town.
Born in 1936 Robert was educated at Kinneil Primary School then at Bo’ness Academy. When he left school, he went to work as a Cobbler with the Co-op before following his father James, into the Mining Industry at the Kinneil Pit.
Robert met Beth at school and the childhood sweethearts married in Bo’ness in 1953. Their daughter, Pamela was born 6 years latter.
Bo’ness SNP Councillor, Ann Ritchie also paid tribute to Robert when she said,
“Robert was always content to be in the background in all of the years I knew him and it as not until the 2009 by-election when I first stood for the SNP that I began to appreciate Robert’s input and sound advice.
He will be sorely missed.”
Falkirk Council SNP Group Leader, Cllr Cecil Meiklejohn added her tribute,
“The entire SNP Council Group is devastated by this sad loss. Although Robert himself has not been part of the council group for many years we all knew of his continued contribution to the electoral success of the SNP in Bo’ness he made.
Our sincerest condolences go to Beth, to daughter Pamela and husband Billy and grandchildren, Iain and wife Stanka, Allan and wife Margaret, great grandchildren, David, Elijah, Zoey and Rose. We will all miss Robert but their loss is the greatest loss and so our thoughts are with them at this time.”
Falkirk East MSP Angus MacDonald, in tribute said,
“The role that Robert Eaglesham played in establishing the SNP as a credible political force in Bo’ness can not be overstated.
It was through the toil of the likes of Robert, Beth and John and Harry Constable that we stand on the brink of not only an Independent Scotland but a fairer, more equal and therefore better Scotland. That is the level of debt that we owe to Robert.”
Funeral Arrangements – Wednesday 24th July 10.30am Craigmailen Church, 8 Braehead, Bo’ness, EH51 OBZ 11am Old Carriden Cemetery, Carriden Brae, Bo’ness, EH51 9SL followed by Tea at the Fisons Social Club, Linlithgow Road, Bo’ness.