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Aberdeen’s massive Pat Butcher mystery solved – and it (probably) wasn’t Michael Gove

The 15ft Pat Butcher portrait that has appeared on Hadden Street in Aberdeen. Picture by Kath Flannery
The 15ft Pat Butcher portrait that has appeared on Hadden Street in Aberdeen. Picture by Kath Flannery

The mystery of who pasted a monumental picture of Pat Butcher on an Aberdeen city centre wall has been solved.

Yesterday, the news broke that a huge portrait of the iconic EastEnders character had inexplicably appeared on the wall of Aberdeen Indoor Market last Friday.

Standing alongside a piece of whale street art from three years ago, it did not initially appear to have any connection to a cultural initiative such as the Nuart festival which took place earlier in the summer.

Naturally, speculation was rife on social media, with suggested culprits including Franksy (presumably the street-art pseudonym of Pat’s husband Frank Butcher, played by Mike Reid) and Bianksy (the alter ego of Patsy Palmer’s Bianca Jackson).

But by far the most popular suggestion was Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove, who was “coincidentally” spotted dancing at an Aberdeen club on Saturday night.

Yes, it was an interesting Sunday to be working on news in Aberdeen.

Clues from Brum

A number of Twitter and Facebook users, however, drew attention to a very similar – if not identical – picture of Pam St Clement in her Butcher garb that was pasted on a wall in Birmingham in March.

The artist that time was Foka Wolf, sometimes referred to as the “Birmingham Banksy” – but had he struck again with the same picture? Or were we dealing with a copy-Pat?

The conjecture was laid to rest at 10.35pm last night, though, when the official Nuart Twitter account posted a tweet claiming the art as part of the festival, and tagging Foka Wolf.

But wait – Foka Wolf has never revealed his true identity, and keeps his head covered with a mask or balaclava at all his appearances in public.

We have been unable to verify whether he speaks with a soft Aberdeen accent, nor whether any of his art has appeared while Westminster was in session or during a Conservative party conference.

Could Foka Wolf be the secretive Brummie satirical street-art persona of Tory MP Michael Gove? We will leave that to the sleuths of the internet to investigate.

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