Former CDC man dies

Robert Soper and first wife Catherine on their wedding day
Robert Soper and first wife Catherine on their wedding day

AN EARLY member of Cumbernauld Development Corporation who owned the new town’s first bookshop has passed away.

Robert Soper, who was a quantity surveyor, passed away peacefully in his sleep at his home in Haggs on November 26. He was 85.

Mr Soper was born in Hong Kong and was brought to Scotland in his infancy and grew up in Edinburgh. He attended Heriot Watt University.

A veteran of the Second World War, Mr Soper served in the King’s Dragoon Guards and was in the reserve for D-Day. However he missed continental action and spent his time in uniform in Long Range Desert Rescue in Libya and in Palestine from 1945-1948.

His involvement with Cumbernauld spanned half a century after he joined the CDC at its earliest point in the 1950s but left to start his own practise in the town, Robert H Soper and Company, which also had a branch in Edinburgh’s New Town.

Mr Soper was also a staunch supporter of affordable social housing and was involved with a number of groups promoting this – and was a founder member of Link. A keen fisherman, Mr Soper started a canoe club at Craigmarloch and his ownership of Scan reflected his love of the written word. A fan of Shakespeare and WB Yeats, he was prone to reciting their works at length to his family on long car journeys. And being a devotee of classic cars, the vehicle was his recognisable E-Type Jaguar.

His love of letters pages and snappy turn of phrase meant that he was a regular correspondent to a number of different newspaper, this one included.

Mr Soper is survived by his second wife Ann and six children from his first marriage to Catherine who is now deceased. - Haward , Greg , Paula , Nick, Robert and Jo. He also had five grandchildren and one great grandchild.