They’re coming to take him away – the Mannie of Beinn a’ Bhragaidh

The Mannie of Beinn a’ Bhragaidh was erected above Golspie in the 1830s.

It appears there have been recent attempts to undermine this ridiculous monstrosity, some 30 metres high) that dominates the landscape around the town of Golspie.

But there are locals who are pretty fond of the Mannie and resent any moves to remove this reminder of an appalling and cruel episode from our past. Some justify retaining the structure which, it has to be said is no bonnie work of art, as a useful focus for discussion about the Clearances. It’s a point of view. For others, the sneering and pitiless figure of George Granville Leveson-Gower, 2nd Marquis of Stafford, Duke of Sutherland whose heirs’ titles include Earl Gower, Earl of Ellesmere, Viscount Trentham, Viscount Brackley, Baron Gower, Baronet of Sittenham, Lord Strathnavar, Earl of Sutherland, is a man not fit to look up to.

The Duke of Sutherland couldn’t make enough money out of the native tenant farmers whose families had lived on the land for generations so he burned them out, tore their homes apart, hounded them from their fields; crops and animals and replaced them with sheep.

Some decedents of those sheep might still live in the area. Some might even be those vociferous in defence of the Mannie.

It started with sheep and then deer. The north of Scotland was transformed into a play park for rich southerners.

The Mannie is no cutting edge sculpture.

The mannie depicted in the Mannie is not someone who deserves to continue his domination of the people and the land around Golspie.

Statues are not sacred objects. They are toppled all over the world. The ones which fall do so because people have been freed from the terror which ensured obedience to the figure who ruled them with a rod of iron.



2 Comments to “They’re coming to take him away – the Mannie of Beinn a’ Bhragaidh”

  1. Thanks for the comment Scotsfox and apologies for the white text. I forgot I’d lightened the background. Hope the maroon is better.

  2. Entirely agree. Blow him up and replace him with a proper tribute to those evicted. (Go and fix the white text on light background please =O)

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