A former Doctor Who star has thrown his weight behind a fundraising campaign for a statue to Nelson Mandela in Glasgow.

Sylvester McCoy, who is best known for playing the seventh incarnation of the enigmatic Time Lord, has donated a signed Doctor Who umbrella with a question-mark theme to the Nelson Mandela Scottish Memorial Foundation.

The foundation is behind the campaign for both a permanent public memorial and an education project “to remind Scots of their proud history of solidarity with the South African people in their struggle against apartheid”.

Glasgow was the first in the world to grant the former South African president the freedom of the city, granted while he was in prison.

READ MORE: Glasgow Nelson Mandela statue takes step closer with work at proposed site

The Nelson Mandela Scottish Memorial Foundation was granted planning consent for the statue in Nelson Mandela Square by Glasgow City Council back in April 2021, following a successful campaign which began in 2017 with the support of Sir Alex Ferguson. 

Back in February, workers dug “trial trenches” at the proposed site to check if there are any underground impediments at the proposed statue location that have not been picked up by early radar checks.

Such an evaluation is sometimes requested as a condition of planning consent or on advice from the planning authority, prior to the application being submitted or determined. 

The Herald: Nelson Mandela in George SquareNelson Mandela in George Square (Image: Evening Times)

Once analysed, the results of the dig should enable a building warrant to be granted, which will then allow the charity to proceed to launch a competition to find a sculptor. 

Brian Filling, chair of the Nelson Mandela Scottish Memorial Foundation, played an instrumental role in bringing Mr Mandela to Glasgow in 1993.

He told The Herald back in February that he hopes the statue could be in place by October, although he conceded that exactly when it will be unveiled will “depend on several factors”. 

To view the eBay listing for the Dr Who umbrella, click here



  Sleeve with question-marks for when umbrella is rolled up. Lovarzi tag a little creased from umbrella's storage by S. McCoy.