Govan statue goes “back to black”

07 Jun 2013

One of Govan’s most iconic landmarks, the statue of Sir William Pearce, has gone “back to black” following £30,000 worth of restoration works.

And some local residents are set to make a real song and dance of the unveiling of the new-look monument on Friday night during the annual Govan Fair Parade.

The 119-year-old bronze statue has been known locally for decades as "The Black Man", due to the effect of the sooty deposits that covered it during the area's industrial hey-day.

Unfortunately, in recent years it had become discoloured by green corrosion that had built up on the bronze.

Now, however, the statue has been restored to a polished black sheen thanks to restoration works carried out as part of the Govan Cross Townscape Heritage Initiative and funded by Glasgow City Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The stone plinth has also been cleaned, mortar joints repointed and the dedication lettering refreshed.

Replica railings will be installed in the coming weeks to replace the missing originals in order to restore the statue to its full glory.

The refurbished "Black Man" will be revealed tonight by the Govan Fair Queen, 11-year-old Lorne Street Primary pupil Rahat Baig, during the annual Govan Fair Parade.

And the word is that the event could turn out to be a real show-stopping performance! Be at Govan Cross at 7.45pm, on Friday, June 7, to see what happens.





  • Pearce Institute