An Aberdeen magician channelled the spirit of Harry Houdini as he performed an escape act at the city’s harbour yesterday.
But 110 years on, Dave Goulding was spared the murky waters of the port and, instead, performed his feat ashore on the docks at the RNLI lifeboat station’s open day.
The Aberdonian was chained, put in handcuffs, padlocked and locked in a heavy sack on Waterloo Quay, emerging moments later free of his shackles and in a change of costume.
Modern health and safety rules made it impossible for Mr Goulding to exactly recreate his idol’s trick in the water.
Even in Houdini’s day, police had tried to intervene to stop him from taking the plunge into the North Sea.
In July 1, 1909 the world-famous escapologist was chained up before throwing himself into the chilly waters of Aberdeen harbour at Footdee.
After his performance, Mr Goulding said: “It seemed to go quite well. The crowd seemed to enjoy it and that is the main thing, at least after getting out relatively unscathed.
“The safety concerns of the lifeboat crew and others meant I could not go in the water, but it was yucky looking, so I was reasonably pleased about that.”
Hundreds turned out for the Aberdeen lifeboat open day, raising funds for the city’s RNLI crew.
Crowds were given tours of the all-weather and inshore lifeboats and took in displays by Stonehaven RNLI, the coastguard, police, firefighters and ambulance crews.
Aberdeen lifeboat fundraising chairman Donald Montgomery said: “We are hugely grateful to all the members of the public who came along and made it such a great day.
“We would like to thank them for showing their support for The RNLI’s Aberdeen lifeboat crew.”
Mr Goulding added: “It went splendidly well. It was a great day for the RNLI, and lots of people came down.
“One of the main reasons we were there was to raise awareness of an Aberdeen Magical Society show we are putting on at The Tivoli Theatre on Friday, August 30.
“All the money raised will go towards supporting the vital work of the Aberdeen lifeboat crew.”
Tickets for the Harbour Sleights are on sale at the Aberdeen Box Office.