Monday, 30 August 2010

Torosay House and David James

I had the pleasure a couple of years ago of visiting the beautiful Scottish island of Mull. Whilst taking in the sea eagles, multi-coloured houses of Tobermory and the religious island of Iona we decided to visit the local stately home called Torosay Castle (website is here).

I was expecting just another trip round elegant rooms and various items of arts and craft ending in a gift shop but was delighted to find this was also a stately home with a monster edge to it. As it turned out it was the home of the late David James - Member of Parliament and co-founder of the Loch Ness Phenomema Investigation Bureau in 1962. You can read his Wikipedia entry here.

As we toured this place I was enthralled to see items which hearkened back to my youth. The best reminder of all was what looked like the original and famous "Nessiteras Rhombopteryx" painting by Sir Peter Scott now hanging in one of two rooms dedicated to Nessie hunting! My picture of it is below.

It was quite a feeling seeing the original which has regaled many a book, newspaper and postcard. Now looking at the castle website you would not think such treasures were inside (perhaps his son is a little embarrased by it all!) but I am sure they are still there and awaiting the inspection of any Nessie-phile who happens to pass by on their holidays.

I will put up other pictures of my visit in the weeks ahead (the next article is here).


  1. Thanks, nice nostalgics for me. I can't recall what year I was there, visiting David James (1975??) and being disappointed that he had given all the Loch Ness Investigation material to Adrian Shine. The LNI in newsletters had mentioned getting several short bits of possibly pertinent film: a hump or cone shaped object in the water; a dark body on a beach at long range. Shine and Harmsworth had talked of making the archive available to serious students, but I was unable to get access. Shine brushed the request off (probably in 1985) by saying those film bits don't show anything useful. I'd have liked to form my own opinion from the originals.

  2. Wonderful, wonderful links to memories of investigations, those times, and more.

    Does anyone know what happened to Tim Dinsdale's famous artist conception of what he felt the LNMs looked like?

    Loren Coleman, Director
    International Cryptozoology Museum

  3. Unless the item broke and was discarded, it is most likely still with his family.

    His son featured in a recent BBC programme: