By the 1871 census, William was in Lochgelly, working as a grocer's assistant. He married Margaret Lamond in 1872 and during the 1870s he became an active member of the Lochgelly community. He joined in the local masonic lodge (where he would eventually become Right Worshipful Master), the curling and bowling clubs and became a police commissioner. By 1881 he had been running a grocer and baker shop, at 16 Bank Street, for some years and was noted as 'employing 3 men and 3 apprentices'. However, he was sadly now a widower, having lost his first wife early in 1880. His mother came to Lochgelly temporarily to help support the family. William married his second wife, Isabella Clark later in 1881 and they continued the business in Lochgelly, while growing as a family.
In the Spring of 1890, the the old inn at Lundin Links was purchased by William Bethune. The image below (from 'Largo: An Illustrated History' by Eunson and Band (2000)) shows the inn at the time that Bethune held the license, which was only for a short spell, as he sold it within a year. The 1891 census records the family back in Largo Parish and living at Hillhead Terrace. William was described as a 'Grocer, Wine and Spirit Dealer' and he still retained the Lochgelly business. By 1901, the family were at 'Bellville' on Emsdorf Street, having had the house built circa 1895.
Three individuals step in to save the Lundin Links hotel build and to help out McTavish (who would now no longer own the hotel but would be retained as its manager). The three new investors were Peter Henderson (the architect of the new hotel and probable contact of McTavish’s from his days at Pattison (Henderson designed breweries for the firm)), William Bethune and Samuel Duncan (McTavish’s father-in-law, a tailor from Edinburgh, also known to Peter Henderson through Masonic circles). The hotel was completed and opened in summer 1900.
Duncan, Henderson and Bethune (shown below from left to right) were friends and golfing partners, who had seen Lundin Links take off as a destination for summer visitors and a draw for golfers. As well as his interests in golf and the hotel in Lundin Links, Bethune was a member of the School Board and Largo Parish Council and was present at many notable local events over the years.
"A well known Gentleman in the person of Mr William Bethune, licensed grocer died at Lochgelly this morning. Deceased was at one time R.W.M. of masonic Lodge Minto 385 and one of the original members of the town council when Lochgelly was formed into a burgh. Mr Bethune originally belonged to Largo and started business in Lochgelly when quite a young man. For some years back deceased was the oldest merchant in the town".
William Bethune was 68 years old when he passed away at 16 Bank Street, Lochgelly on 15th March 1915, outliving his good friends Peter Henderson and David Stewart.
With thanks to John Band for information.