John Craig

(1874—1957) steel manufacturer

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(1874–1957), leading Scottish industrialist whose business expertise resulted in him holding a large number of company directorships in the first half of the 20th century. In many ways, Craig was emblematic of the large degree of interconnectedness which ran through Scottish industry in the inter-war era. He started out in the steel industry and became a leading light in Colvilles (see Colville, David). His reputation as an efficient administrator and company leader led to directorships with Harland and Wolff, the Belfast shipbuilding firm, the Lanarkshire Steel Company, and the Steel Company of Scotland. In the inter-war period he was a leading light in the Scottish industrial community and was prominent in offering advice to the government on how to rectify the structural imbalance in the Scottish economy, although like the majority of his peers, he preferred to pursue a ‘wait and see’ policy in the hope that things would pick up, rather than a programme of industrial diversification (see economic policy:4). As a man of wide-ranging business experience, Craig was appointed governor of the Bank of Scotland after the Second World War.

From The Oxford Companion to Scottish History in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: British History.

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