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  1. Hello Alex,
    It was nice to meet you today, although in curious circumstances.
    Very much enjoyed your website, the paintings are rather wonderful. As a former sailor (tall ships and pilot cutters) your boat painting and poem chimed beautifully with me.
    Have you heard the song ‘Boats away’ by Murray Head? Seek it out on You Tube, I could cry with knowing every time I hear it.
    I hope our paths cross again and bring the chance to meet Jill too. The love song to her would have made Guy Garvey proud, wonderful. With best wishes, Jane.

    • Hi, Jane, apologies for the long delay in replying. I’ve been distracted from the website by other things. Jill and I would love to meet up with you and hear more about your sailing adventures!
      Please let us know when you are available to come for a weekend lunch or evening meal. Meanwhile, if you want to read more of my poems, you can access them at under my pen name Juggler Vain or under Alexander Blackie.
      Very Best Regards

  2. Alex,
    I was forwarded your weblink by Eric Gillespie, who was senior monitor at QVS in 1964-5 and who went on to Glasgow SoA. I remember you well at school. I arrived there in September 1958, when you yourself were SM. David Aitchison was our prefect.

    For a 10 year old lad like I was, you were of rather fierce demeanour. ( You’ve softened in appearance in your old age) I saw you often in the art room under the tutelage of Mr Le Maistre and admired your work greatly. I recall a still life with a shovel and barrel and remember the headmaster’s wife admiring it. It’s been a surprising revelation to see that you’re also a poet and playwright.
    Wishing you well. Keep up the good work.
    John Sharp
    Architect (retired)

    • John, sorry for the delay in replying to your kind Comment. The reason for this is I’ve been through an intensive course of radiotherapy for prostate cancer. Hopefully, this has been successful and I can get back to normality. I haven’t done much painting in the past year or so, rather concentrating on writing. Incidentally, if you want to read more of my poetry, it can be accessed on under my User Name of Juggler Vain or Alexander Blackie. My poetry has received 40,000 reads over the past year. and 40 awards of various kinds. I have had poems published in various collections but am producing a series of my own which should be published in 2020.
      I notice you are an architect and am interested in where you trained and what kind of career you have had. Also, if you are ever down this way in Devon, you would be made every welcome. My email address is:
      which I use more regularly than this site.
      Very Best Regards

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