An iconic Aberdeen statue honouring a historic army regiment will be covered in a new “bird-free” gel to deter gulls from covering it with droppings.
The Gordon Highlanders monument on the Castlegate was unveiled by the Duke of Rothesay in 2011 to commemorate the service of the Gordon Highlanders.
The famous regiment was formed in 1974 and was amalgamated with the Queen’s Own Highlanders to form the Highlanders 20 years later.
Residents have recently complained about the two bronze life-sized soldiers on the block of pink granite being covered in bird droppings.
Now council chiefs have invested in a chemical gel which helps keep the birds away and will be used on the stature over the next two weeks.
Resident Neil Ross said he was annoyed about the state of the statue.
He said: “Every day I walk past the bottom of Union Street and think about the fact we hold marches across the country on Remembrance Sunday to honour the dead – Aberdeen has this monument covered in bird poo with numerous tourists taking pictures of it.
“It’s not great advertising for Aberdeen.”
George Street and harbour SNP councillor Michael Hutchison, an army reservist who was serving as a security detail for Prince Charles the day he unveiled the statue, said he had raised concerns.
He said: “The Gordon Highlanders mean a lot to people in this city, they take pride in the regiment and they expect the statue to be looked after.
“I’m pleased that all options are being looked at to keep this clean. It’s a fine statue and it’s a pity for it to be covered in bird droppings.”
Lord Provost Barney Crockett said the local authority took concerns about the statue “very seriously”.
He added: “We are looking at new methods to deter the birds from the statue.
“The city’s monuments are washed twice a year, which obviously we would like to do more of but we have to look at budgets.
“Hopefully these new methods will work well and will help show the city’s tribute to our wonderful regiment in the best light.”
Bryan Snelling, the chief executive of The Gordon Highlanders Museum on Viewfield Road, said: “The Gordon Highlanders statue on Aberdeen’s Castlegate is an important and rather splendid monument which links the heritage of the regiment to the site of its original 18th century barracks.
“It has seen a little wear since it was unveiled seven years ago which is unsightly.
“However we are confident its integrity remains intact under the ownership and care of the council which commissioned it through the generous support of the Common Good Fund.
“Councillor Michael Hutchison has kindly looked into it for us and there are a few proposed remedies which we welcome.”