FP100: No. 29

Bust of Admiral Thomas Cochrane
Bust of Admiral Thomas Cochrane

Admiral T Cochrane

A memorial to Admiral Thomas Cochrane, whose life formed the inspiration for the fictional naval hero Horatio Hornblower, stands in Culross, where he grew up.

The impressive tribute to Scotland’s greatest naval hero came about largely through the efforts of Culross Community Council, whose members were conscious that the life of Cochrane was celebrated in many South American countries and Greece, but not in his home land.

Born in Ayrshire in 1775, Cochrane spent his childhood and formative years at Abbey House in Culross, then home of the Earls of Dundonald, before joining the Royal Navy.

Prior to the unveiling of the plinth and bust in the Town Square, the only reference to Cochrane in Culross was a plaque and housing development, Cochrane Haven. During his time with the Royal Navy, he gained distinction against the French, being dubbed “le loup de mer” (The Sea Wolf), by Napoleon, after a series of sensational victories in his sloop, the Speedy. The bronze bust was gifted to the people of Culross by Lord Bruce, who received it from the Ministry of Defence.