Bruce County Museum and Cultural Centre (BCM&CC) in Southampton had special visitors on Sunday, May 27th when Neil Turok, Executive Director of the Perimeter Institute of Theoretical Physics and his wife Dr. Corinne Squire paid a visit.
The couple decided to take a trip to Southampton where they also toured Chantry Island and paddled down the Saugeen River the day before their Museum stop.
“Neil Turok was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, to Mary (Butcher) and Latvian-born Ben Turok, who were activists in the anti-apartheid movement and the African National Congress. After graduating from Churchill College, Cambridge, Turok gained his doctorate from Imperial College, London, under the supervision of Professor David Olive, one of the inventors of superstring theory. After a postdoctoral post at Santa Barbara, he was an associate scientist at Fermilab, Chicago. In 1992 he was awarded the Maxwell medal of the Institute of Physics for his contributions to theoretical physics. In 1994 he was appointed Professor of Physics at Princeton University, then held the Chair of Mathematical Physics at the University of Cambridgestarting in 1997. He was appointed Director of the Perimeter Institute in 2008 … with Stephen Hawking, he later developed the so-called Hawking-Turok instanton solutions which, according to the no-boundary proposal of Hawking and James Hartle, can describe the birth of an inflationary universe. “
Mike Sterling of Southampton, an avid volunteer at the Museum, author, lecturer and mathematician, took the couple on a complete tour of the Museum explaining the many facets and exhibits that are housed there.
Following an inside tour of the Museum and the H.M.S. General Hunter replica ship exhibit, they moved outside to explore the grounds with its variety of exhibits.
The first stop was the double Helix structure that was built by Sterling and a group of volunteers. The structure was created from the anchor chain of a shipwreck found on the shore of Lake Huron.
Next, was the Stokes Bay Lighthouse that was moved from its original location on the Bruce Peninsula to Southampton to save it from demolition in 2009. After spending the winter in the Saugeen Shores Town works yard, the Lighthouse was moved by crane to the (BCM&CC), where Sterling completed the restoration of the structure that included, creating a base, removing paint and re-painting the 4,000 cedar shingles and the installation of a light.
Turok said, “What a delightful place Southampton is, we will definitely be returning.”