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Hermitage-School-at-opening

HELENSBURGH is renowned for its grid pattern design, which was the vision of one man.

William Spence is not a household name, unlike the town’s founder, Sir James Colquhoun of Luss, Baronet, after whose wife Helen the town was named.

John-McNeil-wA LEADING figure in Helensburgh and district politics was actually a computer pioneer and a successful author and screenwriter.

John McNeil, chairman of Helensburgh SNP, spent 15 years of his life in the town, many of them while personally renovating the art deco mansion Green Park in Charlotte Street, before his death at the age of 64 on October 22 2004.

William-Leiper-1MANY leading architects have worked in Helensburgh and district over the years, but probably the byword for absolute excellence is to be told: “It’s a Leiper house.”

He designed many of the town’s most impressive properties, including Cairndhu in 1871, Dalmore in 1873, Terpersie and Tordarroch in 1883, Brantwoode in 1895, Red Towers and Ardluss in 1900, and Lynton in 1908 — not to mention the Victoria Infirmary in 1893.

A RENOWNED artist who lived all his life in Helensburgh was a friend of the famous Glasgow Boys and a fringe member of the group.

James Whitelaw Hamilton, RSA, RSW, was one of a group of Glasgow  area painters — including Sir James Guthrie, E.A. Walton, and John Lavery — who painted in the burgh towards the end of the 19th century.

A.N.Paterson-photo-wHELENSBURGH'S former Clyde Street School and Community Centre and the Hermitage Park War Memorial are two of the best known works of a leading burgh architect and artist.

Alexander Nisbet Paterson, ARSA, FRIBA, RSW, was born at Berkeley Terrace in Glasgow, near to the Mitchell Library, the fifth son of cotton manufacturer and merchant Andrew Paterson.

James-GuthrieAN ARTIST who lived in Rhu and Helensburgh at various times was Sir James Guthrie, leader of the internationally renowned Glasgow Boys.

James Guthrie was born in Greenock in 1859, son of the Rev John Guthrie and his wife Ann. He studied law at Glasgow University but, with his father’s permission, left without a degree to pursue a career in art in 1877.

Mary-Gilmour-wAS a remarkable tribute to his deceased wife, a Rhu man privately published in 1902 at considerable expense a book of verses she had written.

The book, entitled “Verses By Mary Gilmour’ was printed by Helensburgh printer J.Lindsay Laidlaw — a business purchased by the late Craig Jeffrey before he launched the Helensburgh Advertiser in 1957.

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