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WHEN Helensburgh Dorian Choir held their 70th anniversary concert in May 2019, they paid tribute to the choir’s founder.

But the programme notes about James MacTaggart barely scratched the surface of the story of a remarkable man and musician — known to all as the blind organist.

A MOTHER and son from Helensburgh were both highly rated artists.

That was the conclusion of administrator Mary-Jane Selwood when she researched the pair for the Anderson Trust Local Collection.

ONE of Scotland’s celebrated poets and novelists was the so-called Ettrick Shepherd . . . and he spent a night in a bothy overlooking Loch Sloy.

James Hogg (1770-1835) had a cousin who lived there in squalour, yet the very next evening he was wined and dined at Inveraray Castle as a guest of the Duke and Duchess of Argyll.

AN EARLY visiting artist who came to Helensburgh to paint taught both Queen Victoria and her daughter Princess Louise.

William Leighton Leitch, who was born on November 22 1804 in Glasgow, near the Royal Infirmary, liked the open aspect of Helensburgh seafront and captured it in watercolour sketches.

TWO of Scotland’s leading pipers of their respective generations lived in Rhu and worked on the Clyde Training Ship Empress in the Gareloch.

Murdo MacDonald and Archie McNeill shared their love of the bagpipes, but otherwise lived very different lives — Murdo as a soldier, Archie, who was blind, as a teacher and composer of pipe music.

WHEN a young American girl arrived at Helensburgh’s St Bride’s School in 1921, it was the surprising start of a life’s work in Gaelic folklore.

Dr Margaret Fay Shaw, who died in 2004 at the age of 101, was one of the most notable collectors of authentic Scottish Gaelic song and traditions in the 20th century.

THE REMARKABLE career of a former child acting star from Helensburgh took another step forward in September 2018.

It was the launch of the BBC newspaper drama series ‘Press’, directed by the highly regarded Tom Vaughan, and it came the day after his 49th birthday.

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