Iconic Bluebird takes off on Bute

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The Isle of Bute was chosen as the site for the re-launch of one of the 20th century’s most iconic vehicles – Donald Campbell’s Bluebird K7.

The two-ton jet hydroplane was recovered from the bottom of Coniston Water in the Lake District in 2001 – 34 years after the notorious crash which killed Donald Campbell on a world record-breaking run and sent Bluebird to the lake bed.

The man behind the salvage operation was Bill Smith and, after 17 years of restoration, the vessel was piped into Rothesay on the evening of Friday August 3 to begin two weeks of trials on the freshwater Loch Fad.

Teething troubles were overcome and, with the Bluebird team and lead driver Ted Walsh behind her, Bluebird K7 reached 100 mph on the loch by Tuesday August 7.

The team will be on Bute until August 16 undertaking extensive trials.