THE birth of Hans Sloane in Killyleagh in April 1660 will again be celebrated this year in the town with a number of exciting events from a chocolate ball, a fantastic food festival, music and a lecture on Hans Sloane.
Sir Hans was a physician and became the President of the Royal College of Physicians in London.He treated Kings and the landed gentry and also the poor and was interested in the discovery of new medicines.
The Hans Sloane festival begins with a classical concert
He is also famous for inventing milk chocolate. The recipe was passed to the Cadbury Brothers who built a fortune on a nationâ€™s sweet tooth. Also a great scientist, Sir Hans took over as President of the Royal Society from Sir Isaac Newton. He was a great collector of natural and man made objects and having invested wisely was wealthy enough to buy a large house and associated farmland of Chelsea then just outside of London.
The house was to hold his vast private museum, which was subsequently bequeathed to the nation. The world-renowned British Museum was built originally to house that collection, the natural objects later going to the Natural History Museum and books to the British Library. His bust is the first object one sees on entry to the British Museum.
Sir Hans was vastly influential and Sloane Square in London was built to commemorate his achievements. His early life was in a humble house in Frederick Street/Back Street in Killyleagh. The Sloane 350 group are dedicated supports of the memory of this famous son of KIllyleagh.