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Clydesdale Bank host centenary celebration of Mary Slessor

1st July 2015

Clydesdale Bank’s Dundee team hosted an event on Tuesday celebrating the life and work of local missionary Mary Slessor.

The event, held at the Steeple Church, is one of a number of events across Dundee celebrating Mary Slessor’s Centenary year.

Attendees from the local business community and Foundation supporters, heard from a range of speakers including Doug Binnie, Chairman of the Mary Slessor Foundation and Richard Smith from Clydesdale Bank.

As part of Clydesdale Bank’s ongoing relationship with the Foundation, the Bank’s digital team built a new website for the foundation. Revealed on the night, the website development has saved the Foundation around £10,000.

Richard Smith, head of the Dundee Business and Private Banking Centre, said: “Clydesdale Bank has championed Mary Slessor for many years.

“In 1997, as a tribute to her work as a missionary in 19th century Nigeria, Mary Slessor was featured on the Clydesdale Bank £10 note.

“The Mary Slessor Foundation is a tribute to her legacy, working tirelessly to improve the lives of those in need. It’s a pleasure to support such a worthy cause.”

Doug Binnie, Chairman of the Mary Slessor Foundation, said: “I would like to thank Clydesdale Bank for the website they have developed for us.

“Their hard work and investment in time and effort has provided Foundation with a facility that we would otherwise not have been able to afford.

“It has been a critical part of an initiative aimed at continuing to support the work the Foundation carries out in the Calabar region of south east Nigeria for which we are very grateful.

Mary Slessor was a missionary from Dundee who spent a great deal of her life working with local tribes in Nigeria between the years of 1876 and 1915 learning their culture and language in the process. She sought to improve the life of the local population, spread Christianity and promote children and women’s rights.

Despite periods of ill health Mary would often adopt children that had been abandoned or orphaned and care for them as her own. Due to her dedication to her work and the many lives she saved, Mary is still greatly respected in Nigeria, with streets, buildings and schools named after her.

In Dundee, a 3 ton Aberdeen granite memorial has been erected, proudly displaying two cast bronze plaques designed by the Foundation in conjunction with local sculptor Roddy Mathieson.

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