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Obituary of CBH Benefactor - Sir James Cayzer
All of those who met Sir James Cayzer during the times that he visited Cove Burgh Hall will be sad to hear of his recent death. The Daily Telegraph obituary of Wednesday 29th February gives much interesting detail and glimpses of a colourful life.
Throughout 2003 & 4 the directors of Cove Burgh Hall had been wrestling with the project to install disabled facilities. By early 2005 it was still moving slowly ahead, overcoming various obstacles but and as costs escalated the problems of raising the necessary finances was proving a real headache. Co-incidentally, after being in operation for 4 years the directors felt confident enough to hold an official opening ceremony of the hall under its new management. The invitation list was as comprehensive as possible and its top name was that of Sir James Cayzer. His great grandfather, Sir Charles William Cayzer, summer resident of Clevedon House, Cove, had been instrumental in building the hall in 1893 and it seemed a good idea to renew the family connection. We made contact with Sir James and invited him to the reopening. He duly arrived and in front of a full hall performed the opening ceremony.
The following day, 6th May, the directors hosted him for lunch at the Kilcreggan Hotel. Sir James had plenty of family stories up his sleeve and a couple of hours passed very quickly. When he got upon to leave he quietly handed us an envelope, made his good-byes and departed (in his chauffeur driven Rolls Royce). The envelope contained a cheque for £10,000. This was in addition to £2,000 that he had previously donated.
Work on disabled facilities duly went ahead and, after many twists and turns, were officially opened by Sir James in August 2008.
During those years we met him on several occasions; once at Kinpurnie Castle for afternoon tea and twice for tea at Cove. Cakes and jams were always important ingredients. There were also many phone calls and letters which, along with some photographs are now in the Burgh Hall archives.
I will always remember him with great fondness. More details available on request. RR.