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Last Updated: Monday, 14 July, 2003, 16:41 GMT 17:41 UK
Donation saves explorer's base
Livingstone House
Livingstone House will now be renovated
The generosity of a Scottish businessman has saved the historic African home of explorer Dr David Livingstone.

Trade Aid, a small Hampshire-based charity with a project in Tanzania, had appealed for help in restoring the 19th century property.

Neil Bairdwatson read about the building's plight in a Scottish newspaper and was immediately interested as his home is less than one mile from Livingstone's birthplace in Blantyre, Lanarkshire.

Mr Bairdwatson, managing director of Caldervale Forge, in Airdrie, contacted Trade Aid and pledged 15,000 towards the Livingstone House project.

One of the charity's trustees, Brian Currie, travelled up to Scotland last week to receive the cheque.

We had imagined it would take us a considerable amount of time to raise the necessary funds
Brian Currie,
Trade Aid
Mr Currie said: "All of us at Trade Aid are absolutely thrilled and completely overwhelmed by this wonderful donation which will enable Livingstone House to be restored to its place as one of the important focal points in Mikindani.

"We had imagined it would take us a considerable amount of time to raise the necessary funds.

"It is wonderful that we can now turn our attention to other proposed projects in Mikindani, safe in the knowledge that Livingstone House has been saved and will be put to excellent use as a museum and as accommodation for visitors to the town."

Dr Livingstone was a missionary who became one of the most famous explorers in history.

Photograph of David Livingstone
Dr Livingstone travelled in Africa for 30 years
Livingstone House, in the fishing port of Mikindani in southern Tanzania, was home to the Scottish explorer before commencing his final journey to the interior of Africa.

He once quoted Mikindani in his diaries as being "the finest port on the coast".

Trade Aid, which has created 40 jobs in the village by converting an old fort into a hotel, is now turning its attention to the house.

The house, a two-storey building made from coral blocks, is currently uninhabitable.

Dr David Livingstone was born in Blantyre in 1813.

At the age of 10 he began to work in the local cotton mill but decided he wanted to become a Christian missionary and was ordained in 1840.

He arrived in Africa in 1841 where he began travelling, setting up missions along the way and seeking an end to the slave trade he abhorred.

Bid to save explorer's African base
10 Jun 03  |  Scotland
Dr Livingstone's spear, I presume
10 Dec 99  |  Scotland


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