Lester attended Queen Mary College, London, and Birkbeck College, London.
Lester had military service at Royal Air Force, 1945-51. In British Travel Association he was a member of staff form 1955 till 57, assistant to the general manager for the United States, manager of Chicago office. Later, he was assigned to Australia and West Germany. He served at Scottish Tourist Board as a chief executive from 1970; English Tourist Board as a chief executive from 1975. He also worked as the director in National Trust for Scotland for three years from 1983. Later, in Europa Nostra as the secretary general in The Hague, Netherlands.
He was member of council in Scotland’s Garden Scheme (member of executive committee, 1970-75 and 1983-93); National Gardens Scheme, member of council, 1975-83; International Council of Monuments and Sites, member of international cultural tourism committee from 1990, chairperson of cultural tourism committee for ICOMOS (United Kingdom) from 1993.
As a member of board of governors he worked Edinburgh Film House almost 10 years, than was promoted to the post of honorary vice-president in 1996. He also served at Cromarty Arts Trust, Academia Istropolitana, International Cultural Center summer school, World Monuments Fund (New York, United States).
Lester was a member of Royal Society of Arts, Royal Scottish Geographical Society, Tourism Society.
Lester Borley married Mary Alison Pearce. They have three daughters.