Wed | Dec 13, 2017

Footprints | Blanche Blackwell - An exceptional host

Published:Tuesday | August 22, 2017 | 12:00 AM

The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has expressed sadness at the passing of Blanche Blackwell, the mother of music industry mogul Chris Blackwell. Blanche Blackwell passed away on Tuesday in London at the age of 104.

Minister Grange said Blanche Blackwell was "an exceptional host who welcomed and introduced several leading figures, including actors, authors and singers, to Jamaica at her home at Bolt House in St Mary, and encouraged some of her famous guests to set up homes on the island".

Among those who established homes near Bolt House were the playwright, actor and composer Noel Coward, and the James Bond author, Ian Fleming. Minister Grange said "Mrs Blackwell was muse" to both men and had "inspired some of the great works that Fleming and Coward produced while in Jamaica". The minister also recalled Mrs Blackwell's role in building up one of the finest string of racehorses in Jamaica. Minister Grange has expressed condolences to Mrs Blackwell's only child, Chris, and other members of the family.