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Brechin City Unveil Bizarre Mel Gibson Braveheart Statue Outside Stadium

Tom Wood

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Brechin City Unveil Bizarre Mel Gibson Braveheart Statue Outside Stadium

Featured Image Credit: Brechin City

Scottish football club Brechin City have unveiled a frankly bizarre statue of Mel Gibson in the film Braveheart outside their ground, and - naturally - it has divided opinion on the internet.

Now, the statue was actually created back in 1996 by a local man called Tommy Church, so perhaps it is fitting that his 'Marmite' statue of Gibson as William Wallace now resides outside Brechin City's home Glebe Park.

The statue has been moved around quite a bit, having previously sat elsewhere in Brechin, before being installed at the entrance to the Wallace Monument in Stirling.

Then, in 2008, it headed back to Church's studio and workshop.

Entitled 'Freedom' - for obvious reasons to anyone who has seen the film - it hasn't always been the most popular piece of public art.

Credit: Brechin City
Credit: Brechin City

Ken Thomson, marketing chief at Stirling District Tourism, said in 2008: "Some people liked it while others loathed it".

That's why he also described it as a 'Marmite object'.

Also, it was defaced by vandals who didn't like Gibson's role as Wallace, they covered it with blue paint - which actually could have worked - and made marks on the face of the statue.

Another bit of the statue, the head of the governor of York, has also been stolen and never found, according to reports in the Daily Record.

Anyway, Brechin City, who play in the Highland League, are obviously happy enough to have it.

They held a special ceremony yesterday at which the statue was unveiled by STV presenter Andrea Brymer, as well as the artist, and club chairman Kevin Mackie.

Credit: Brechin City
Credit: Brechin City

On their website, the club released a statement that read: "The sun and crowds came out for a fantastic day to honour the craftsmanship of Brechiner Tommy Church and it was brilliant to see the community of all ages turn out in numbers to support the event.

"Our thanks also go to former Chairman David Birse for compèring and our piper for the day, Cameron Winter."

It's all for a good cause, too. They raised some good cash for a local kidney dialysis charity in the process.

Brechin's community manager Clark Renilson added: "When Tommy came up with the idea we were delighted to accept his offer which will not only be appreciated by our own supporters but also visiting supporters to the ground.

"The statue itself is a remarkable piece of craftsmanship by a local man who put Brechin on the map with his talents.

"Having previously been on display all over Scotland we are delighted that the statue is situated within our ground for all to see and appreciate."

However, some have compared Tom's handiwork to the famous statue of Cristiano Ronaldo, as well as others likening it to Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin.

One person wrote: "Hahahahaha why have you accidentally carved a statue of Mel Gibson with his kilt caught in a train door? Wallace didn't look anything like that."

Another wrote: "Has he accidentally stepped on a piece of Lego..?"

A third said: "Thanks for keeping our spirits up.

"Haven't laughed as much at anything for a very long time."

Either way, it's nice that they raised some cash for charity, and it's a decent bit of publicity for Brechin City.

Topics: SPORT, TV and Film, Celebrity, Football, Weird, Scotland

Tom Wood
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