New book set to chart Bute’s Connections

A NEW book revealing the Bute connections of more than 20 notable figures from the worlds of science, industry, medicine and entertainment - to name but a few - will be launched at Bute Museum this weekend.

Bute Connections, written by Jean McMillan, Margaret Lamb and Allan Martin and published by the Buteshire Natural History Society, is based on a successful exhibition hosted by the museum during August 2009 as part of the Scotland-wide Year of Homecoming celebrations.

Among those celebrated in the book’s 112 pages are the hydraulic engineer Robert Thom, father-and-son actors Edmund and Charles Kean, grocer and yachtsman Thomas Lipton, Antarctic explorer Henry ‘Birdie’ Bowers, and monorail pioneer George Bennie.

In his foreword to the book, BNHS president Billy Sprowl says: “This book represents a major contribution to Bute local history.

“There is a wealth of new informatino here, which has all been meticulously researched and lucidly set out, and the writing style makes it accessible to a wide readership without in any way compromising its scholarly value.”

The foreword also reveals that the book has prompted its authors to search far and wide for possible subjects for a second Bute Connections exhibition - and perhaps even a second book - to honour more of the notable men and women with connections to the island.

The book launch takes place at Bute Museum in Stuart Street, Rothesay this Saturday, February 12, at 11am.