THIS WEEK'S HIGHLIGHTS
|Man with a mission - Augustus Smith and the Isles of Scilly
The year is 1834. Back then it was customary for rich young men to travel abroad in search of worthy causes.
Augustus Smith came here on such a mission.
But rather than venture to some far flung colony Smith travelled just a few miles off the coast of Cornwall.
He paid the Duchy £20,000 for a lease on the whole of the Isles of Scilly and gave himself the title Lord Proprietor.
Smith sowed gorse seeds around the islands with saplings in behind.
They in turn grew into trees that provided protection for Scillys otherwise exposed fields and allowed crops such as daffodils and potatoes to flourish.
He built a new quay at Hugh Town, to send those crops to the mainland - and bring tourists back the other way.
Smith also built schools on all the main islands and continued his pioneering work in education.
In order to make farming a viable proposition he evicted those he considered surplus to requirements.
|Bloomin' lovely - Smith's descendants live at Tresco
And his zeal for orderly reform didnt go down well with Scillys smugglers and wreckers.
Legend has it that aggrieved islanders from St Agnes plotted to drown Smith by pegging him out below the high water mark.
This is an event that probably didnt happen, but the fact that the story survives shows the strength of divided feelings for the man they called 'Emperor Smith'.
He also left another amazing legacy - he built and created Tresco Abbey and its Gardens.
Succeeding generations of the family have maintained and added to Augustus Smith's paradise island.
His descendants retain their lease on Tresco and continue to live in the Abbey.
The other four inhabited islands reverted to the Duchy in 1922. David Stafford assesses the impact of the man who "civilised" the Isles of Scilly and his legacy today.
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