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ONE of the most tragic tales of Helensburgh’s past is that of the accident which killed two town matrons.

Jean Chapman, the 56 year-old matron of the town’s Victoria Infirmary, and Helen Milne, the 55 year-old matron of the nearby Helensburgh Infectious Diseases Hospital, both lost their lives.

Rachel-Buchanan-1970-wTO THIS day, mention the mentally handicapped in Helensburgh and one name comes to mind.

Rachel Buchanan MBE died on May 25 2008, but she remains the inspiration for all who help the charity now called ENABLE.

WHENEVER the topic of the Suffragettes crops up, one person’s name immediately springs to mind — Mrs Emmeline Pankhurst.

As the campaign for votes for women reached fever pitch in the years leading up to the First World War, the militant actions of Mrs Pankhurst and the Suffragettes were headline news up and down the country.

mcnab familyOVER the years one name has become synonymous with the Loch Longside village of Portincaple . . . Finlay McNab.

The name came up again when Helensburgh Heritage Trust chairman Stewart Noble was given a copy of a one-page letter from the LochGoil & Inveraray Steam Boat Company on their headed notepaper awarding a sub-contract to him.

Dr-J-Ewing-Hunter-bust-09.12.14-wA BRONZE bust of Dr James Ewing Hunter, MB, CM, FRSGS, JP, stands in the upstairs gallery at Helensburgh Library.

The strongly worked facial features of the bust — presented to the town by his son and daughter David and Margaret — are picked out well by the lighting. But who was Dr Ewing Hunter, and what did he do?

Camis-Eskan-group-c1857-w

IT WAS a very different age when this stunning photo was taken at Camis Eskan House at Colgrain as far back as about 1857.

And in finding out about it, I learned for the first time that there was a Lord Campbell of Eskan and still is a Baron Colgrain.

THE MOST generous benefactor in Helensburgh’s history believed that divine intervention saved his life, and giving was his way of expressing his gratitude.

Provost Andrew Buchanan is best remembered for donating the outdoor swimming pool, but he also paid for a paddling pool at the foot of James Street, and refurbishment of the Victoria Hall to mark the Silver Jubilee. Privately his generosity was just as great.

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