Maud MacLellan as CO, No 1 MTTC COPYRIGHT: www.fany.org.uk
Maud MacLellan, OBE
Corps Commander, Women's Transport Service (First Aid Nursing Yeomanry)
6 October 1903 – 21 May 1977
Maud Lilburn MacLellan was born in Kelvinside, Glasgow. Maud was born one of three children to Walter Thomas MacLellan, a partner in the iron conglomerate P and W MacLellan Ltd, and his wife, Jane Adair Whyte.
In the year of her birth, Maud’s family moved to Sinclair Street in Helensburgh, the town where she was to remain in for the rest of her life.
In 1929 MacLellan, joined the Glasgow section of the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry, the FANY. FANY was created in 1907 as a first aid link between front-line fighting units and the field hospitals. During the First World War, FANYs ran field hospitals, drove ambulances and set up soup kitchens and troop canteens, often under highly dangerous conditions. By the Armistice, they had been awarded many decorations for bravery.
Although promised administrative independence within the new service by the War Office, the hostility of the ATS director, Dame Helen Gwynne-Vaughan, forced the FANY drivers within months into choosing between enrolment in the ATS or abandoning the fledgling organization altogether.
Many FANYs were outraged at this breach of agreement and feelings ran high. Maud MacLellan, by then a senior officer and known by her peers as ‘wee Maudie’, in what she saw as the best interests of the country at such a critical time, led by example and in November 1938 accepted command of the 4th Scottish Motor Company, ATS.
She became group commander of the Scottish Motor Transport Companies in August 1940 and established excellent relations with the military commanders of Scottish command, overcoming much hostility towards the new women's service.
In May 1944 Maud MacLellan took command of the Motor Transport Training Centre at Camberley. It was during this period that Maud would teach the future Queen Elizabeth II how to drive.
MacLellan returned to the FANY at the end of the war, and in September 1947 became Corps Commander on the retirement of Mary Baxter Ellis.
Maud MacLellan was made an OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours in 1957, the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the FANY corps. Maud retired in 1965 having never married, and used her time to pursue her love of fishing. She died on 21 May 1977 in her family home in Helensburgh.
Since 1999, when the Commandant in Chief, HRH the Princess Royal, gave the Corps permission to use her title, the Corps has been known as FANY (The Princess Royal's Volunteer Corps). The organization has continued to provide specialist communications for the civil and military authorities. It has remained an independent, all-women voluntary organization.
No 1 MTTC (ATS and FANY) 1945 instructing staff. 2nd row L-R Commandant MacLellan, HRH Princess Elizabeth, 2IC Carey
Our thanks to www.helensburghheroes.com and www.fany.org.uk for their help with this information
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