Page last updated at 11:03 GMT, Thursday, 26 June 2008 12:03 UK

'Whale' jawbones put back on hill

Replica whale bones being placed on North Berwick Law
The replica bones weigh 560kg (88st)

A fibreglass replica of a whale's jawbone has been airlifted to the top of North Berwick Law in East Lothian.

The previous bones were removed from the site in 2005 due to safety concerns after standing for about 70 years.

The jawbone arch is thought to have been replaced three times since it was placed on top of the Law in 1709.

The new fibreglass bones, which cost about 20,000, are 6.5m (21ft) high and weigh 560kg (88st). They were flown to the top of the hill by helicopter.

Macmerry firm Ralph Plastics used the previous whale bones to cast exact replicas from fibreglass reinforced with wood and steel for a weatherproof finish.

Jim Ralph
This was one of the more unusual jobs I have been asked to do but they have been made to last, it will out live me
Jim Ralph
Replica whale bone's designer

An anonymous friend of North Berwick donated the replacement bones to the town.

David Berry, East Lothian Council's leader, said: "From originally being a beacon for homecoming sailors, the jawbones on top of the Law have come to be a symbol of North Berwick, recognised by visitors and locals alike.

"Many people have said how they missed them and how the Law looked 'bare' without them.

"I'm just delighted that the community pulled together to ensure that our council restored a long-lasting jawbone to its rightful prominent place."

Jim Ralph, the replica whale bone's designer, said: "This was one of the more unusual jobs I have been asked to do but they have been made to last, it will outlive me."


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