Commuters at Partick rail and subway station were yesterday morning greeted by a statue of the GI Bride, one of the cast of Bud Neill’s Lobey Dosser Glasgow cowboy strip which ran in the Evening Times in the 1950s.
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She was scheduled to return to Partick in time for the Homecoming celebrations in 2009 but her arrival was somewhat delayed. The bronze statue was put in place last night without ceremony.
The GI Bride is one of the residents of Neill’s mythical Calton Creek, a township in the Arizona desert surreally populated by Glaswegians. Like many real-life Scottish women, she had married a GI and followed him to America, only to discover disappointment in the land of plenty.
In the cartoon strip, the GI Bride had a cameo role, perpetually trying to hitchhike home to Scotland. Her bubble usually read: “Ony o’ youse blokes goin’ the length o’ Pertick?” or simply the plea: “Pertick?”
The GI Bride is a companion piece to the Lobey Dosser two-legged equestrian statue in Glasgow’s Woodlands Road, which was erected in tribute to Neill during Glasgow’s year as European City of Culture in 1990.
Colin Beattie, publican and patron of the arts, organised the GI Bride project, with support from Strathclyde Partnership for Transport. Mr Beattie, who also commissioned Alasdair Gray to paint a ceiling mural in Oran Mor, said: “I think Bud Neill might have been amused at the GI Bride finally making her journey home to an integrated transport hub in Partick. ”
The artist for the project was Ranald MacColl, himself a cartoonist. He said: “The location is doubly appropriate since Bud Neill was born in Partick.”