A RENOWNED Fife pottery has joined the ever-growing band of admirers of Hamish McHamish, the most celebrated cat in St Andrews, which it is hoped will be immortalised with a life-size statue in the university town.
Griselda Hill, who operates the Wemyss Ware Pottery – Scotland’s most famous pottery made and handpainted in the Kingdom since 1882 – has been following the ginger moggy’s rise to stardom with admiration after she received a Christmas gift of the book, ‘Hamish McHamish, Cool Cat About Town,’ by Susan McMullan, focusing on his life in St Andrews.
Since Wemyss Ware cats are so popular, Griselda hit on the idea of commemorating Hamish in the Wemyss pottery style, so a unique 13” cat was designed and painted by Elaine Syme, the head decorator at the Ceres pottery.
She then read with great interest the Citizen’s exclusive article earlier this month about the proposed statue of Hamish in Church Square, and decided that the pottery could help with fundraising for it by producing a limited edition of seven-inch Hamish cats.
Griselda contacted Flora Selwyn, editor of the award-winning magazine, St Andrews In Focus, who has commissioned the statue by the well-known Scottish sculptor, David Annand.
Flora is enthusiastic about the idea of producing a limited edition run of 100 small Hamish cats – with the pottery donating £10 per cat to the Hamish fund – a total of £1000 if all the cats are sold.
She said: ”I’m incredibly grateful to Griselda. Not only is she adding another beautiful addition to Wemyss Ware collectables, she is adding a further dimension to Hamish’s fame, as well as contributing very generously to his statue. St Andrews is so lucky. Thank you Griselda with all my heart.”
Griselda added: ”The smaller cats have also been designed by Elaine Syme and each will be made and hand painted in the Ceres pottery.
“They will be numbered from one to 100 and have Hamish written on the base and come with a signed certificate.
“I hope these cats will add to Hamish’s already distinguished profile, and also help promote St Andrews.”
A campaign has been launched with a target figure of £5000 to fund the statue of the ginger feline, which has roamed the centre of the town for 14 years.
The Wemyss Ware Pottery recently featured at number 32 in The Citizen’s Top 100 Fife businesses and its cats are among its most popular designs.