FP100: No. 28

Man in the Wall, Ceres
Man in the Wall, Ceres

‘Wee Man in the Wall’

Opposite the Ceres Inn surveying the passing scene from his niche in the wall is the Toby-jug figure of the Rev. Thomas Buchanan, minister of Ceres 1578-99, known as ‘The Provost of Ceres’.

This squat, grinning little figure has a colourful history and has done a great deal of travelling in his time.The statue was the work of a local stonemason called John Howie, born in 1820 and brought up in Saughtree Cottage.

The statue’s original resting place was in the gardens of Kirklands, the old church manse that once occupied what is now the church car park, where he was placed in 1837 by his first owner the Rev Joseph Crichton, minister of Ceres for almost 60years.

Almost forgotten, the statue remained in his niche undisturbed for almost a century, until he was pushed into sudden notoriety in 1933 when he was sold by Mr Ogilvie the postmaster, owner of Kirklands, to a Mrs Lindsay of Cupar.

Such was the indignation caused by the loss of the figure to the village, that the people of Ceres insisted he be brought back as soon as possible.

The statue returned safely, was to be moved to a more prominent position. He was officially unveiled in his present location at the Ceres Games of June 1939.