The Bucket Trail’s ‘oldest’ Oor Wullie looks set to enjoy his retirement in good care.
Oor Wullie Noo, previously found on Douglas Terrace in Broughty Ferry, will spend his days cheering up residents of Balhousie Care Group.
The sculpture was snapped up by the group’s chairman Tony Banks at the public auction on Tuesday. Mr Banks managed to secure the sought-after Wullie with a personal online bid of £18,000. He will now be gifted to the care group, who sponsored the statue.
Oor Wullie Noo, which depicts the cheeky wee scamp as an 80-year-old, has a special connection with Balhousie as the residents provided inspiration for the design of the sculpture.
Two residents from the St Ronan’s Care Home in Dundee modelled for local artist, Alison Price, as she painted the sculpture on site a few weeks before the Bucket Trail started . Barbara Clubb modelled her hands and Alison studied Raymond Mennie to capture his facial features.
Now fondly renamed ‘Auld Wullie’ by the team at Balhousie, plans are under way for Auld Wullie to tour all 25 of the group’s care homes across the North East of Scotland, with a party to be held at each location.
Louise Barnett, Director of Operations at Balhousie Care Group, thought it was great to have Oor Wullie Noo back.
She said: “It has been wonderful to be involved in such an incredibly popular public art project in Dundee this summer. We are over-the-moon to be welcoming Auld Wullie back to where he was inspired.
“As an 80-year-old, we are sure he will get on famously with our residents and will enjoy visiting them across all 25 of our care homes. I’d like to thank Tony for very generously bidding to ensure Auld Wullie came home to us.”
Tony Banks, Chairman of Balhousie Care Group added: “I am delighted to be able to support The Archie Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Appeal by bidding on Auld Wullie and helping to make him a permanent fixture across our care homes. An incredible amount of money was raised at Tuesday’s auction, which was all for a very worthy cause.
“I’m sure many people across Balhousie Care Group will enjoy meeting the Auld Wullie on his tour of our 25 homes.”
A spectacular £883,000 was raised in total at Tuesday’s auction and all proceeds will go towards The Archie Foundation’s bid to install twin-operating theatre’s at the Tayside children’s hospital in Ninewells Hospital.