Racing driver and Marquess of Bute dies aged 62, following short illness


Tributes have been paid to a British Marquess and racing driver dies following short illness.

The 7th Marquess of Bute, John Colum Crichton-Stuart, died aged 62 on Monday.

Known to friends as Johnny Bute, the Marquess was a former racing driver and most notably won the 1988 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The Marquess’s family played a big part in the development of Cardiff from the iconic city centre castle, Castell Coch, and the public parkland named after them, reports Wales Online.

The Butes were responsible for the renovation of Cardiff Castle and not only gave the city’s residents Bute Park, but also Sophia Gardens, and Cathays Park, one of the most impressive civic centres in the world.

Johnny Bute
Racing driver Johnny Bute, Marquess of Bute aka Johnny Dumfries

On Tuesday the flag at Cardiff Castle was flown at half-mast as a sign of respect.

The 62-year-old spent much of his time on his namesake Scottish island at his ancestral home, Mount Stuart.

A tribute from his family described him as a “moderniser and an inspirational thinker.”

They added he was as a “devoted husband, father, brother, uncle, son and grandfather and loved by all.”

They said: “The indomitable spirit and energy which Johnny brought to his life will be greatly missed, and the immense warmth and love with which he embraced his family.

Johnny Bute
A tribute from his family described him as a “moderniser and an inspirational thinker.”

“His heart was firmly rooted on the Island of Bute where he spent much of his time. Johnny chaired the Board of Mount Stuart Trust from its active inauguration in 2005 when Mount Stuart and its gardens opened to the public, and its rural estate was vested into the charitable trust.

“He was a moderniser and an inspirational thinker, transitioning a family home to a progressive, working visitor facility and estate.”

“His island projects include the internationally respected Bute Fabrics and, most recently, the Kerrylamont Centre for Rural Excellence and Bute Yard. He was a philanthropist through his foundation, particularly focusing on Scotland and the West Coast.”

Celebrities and fans also took to Twitter to pay tribute.

Formula 1 commentator Martin Brundle said: “What the hell is going on, now we’ve lost Johnny Dumfries at 62.

“A member of our ‘rat pack’ group, full of life and vigour, always with such style. Wonderful man and a fast driver. Condolences to his family.”

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