Edinburgh World Heritage - News Article

 

Project shines new light on Greyfriars Bobby

A traditional lamp standardhas been reinstated alongside the statue to Greyfriars Bobby.


Jul 20, 2012

The project was the inspiration of the One O’Clock Gun and Timeball Association, with funding from Edinburgh World Heritage and the City of Edinburgh Council.

The statue dates to 1873 and was commissioned by Baroness Burdett-Coutts, the President of the Ladies Committee of the RSPCA. In the Victorian period a gaslight stood behind the statue to illuminate it night. However the lamp column was cut down when the city’s streetlights were converted to electricity in the 1950s, and later all traces was removed.

Edinburgh World Heritage awarded a grant of £3,721 towards the development, manufacture and installation of the new lamp column and lantern. The design was developed after investigation of historic photographs and salvaged original lamp columns. The project is part of a scheme of public realm improvements to George IV Bridge, which has enhanced the pavements along on this important Old Town street.

Fiona Rankin, World Heritage Projects Manager said: “We were delighted to be able to help improve the setting for this important city landmark. The statue of Greyfriars Bobby has to be one of the most photographed locations in Edinburgh, so it is highly appropriate that this traditional style of lighting is now reinstated.”

George Robinson of the One O'Clock Gun and Timeball Association said:"The lamp post is superb, it's amazing the difference it makes to the fountain. The capital now has the most famous dog in the world and the most photographed lamp post."

The tale of Greyfriars Bobby is synonymous with Edinburgh and has featured in two movies. The story goes that when Bobby’s owner died, the loyal dog refused to leave him. Bobby sat day after day, guarding his old master’s grave in Greyfriars Kirkyard.

Local people took the dog to their hearts and fed him scraps of food, but it was also pointed out that stray dogs were usually put down. The Lord Provost, Sir William Chambers, paid for Bobby’s licence, and the faithful dog became adopted by the city.



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