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Friday, 1 November, 2002, 15:25 GMT
Scots tribute to Linda McCartney
Linda McCartney Statue
The statue is the centrepeice of a garden
A memorial garden has been opened near the Mull of Kintyre in tribute to the late Linda McCartney.

The photographer and animal rights campaigner, who was married to former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney, died from cancer in 1998 at the age of 57.

The Mull of Kintyre was a favourite retreat for the celebrity couple and was immortalised by Sir Paul in a hit song in the 1970s.

A bronze statue of Linda McCartney, commissioned and donated by Sir Paul, forms the centrepiece of the garden in Campbeltown - the main town on the Kintrye peninsula in the west of Scotland.

McCartneys - archive
The couple loved their Scottish retreat

Mrs McCartney's family paid tribute to the local community at the unveiling on Friday.

Daughters Stella and Mary McCartney said the area had been an inspiration to their mother.

In a statement they said: "Scotland was one of mum's favourite places and it is wonderful to have a permanent statue to remind us of the great times we spent with her there.

"We would like to say thanks to the people of Campbeltown for honouring her in this way."

Sir Paul, his daughters fashion designer Stella and photographer Mary, and Heather, Linda's daughter from her previous marriage, had been expected at the unveiling on Friday but were unable to attend.

'Generosity'

The ex-Beatle and his son James were touring America this month, and the daughters were said to have work commitments.

Sir Paul's second wife, model Heather Mills, had not been expected at the ceremony.

The Linda McCartney Kintyre Memorial Trust, which has been working on the project for four years, also hopes to open a gallery nearby where exhibits of her Kintyre photographs can be displayed.

Trust chairman Alastair Cousin said: "I hope that the creation of this memorial garden will express to the McCartney family the gratitude that the community felt for all that they have done for Kintyre and its reputation at home and abroad.

"Much more importantly it will be recognised as an appreciation of Linda's generosity, always anonymous, to so many causes, her enthusiasms for Kintyre expressed in her photography and her determination to ensure that her family were exposed to its values whenever possible."

'Tranquility'

The McCartneys owned a number of hill farms in Kintyre where they spent a significant amount of time raising their family.

The scenic area of south west Scotland is also known as the inspiration for the Beatles' song "The Long and Winding Road," and for the Wings number one hit "Mull of Kintyre".

A two-thirds life size clay statue of Linda holding a lamb is the focal point of the memorial garden.

Local Councillor Alistair McKinlay said: "The development of this garden will encourage people from far and wide to visit Kintyre and experience the unique landscape and atmosphere of tranquillity which inspired one of the leading photographers of the twentieth century."

See also:

23 Oct 02 | England
03 Oct 02 | Entertainment
10 Jun 02 | Entertainment
30 Nov 01 | Entertainment
14 Mar 00 | Entertainment
21 Apr 98 | UK
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