In a shock move by city officials, plans to quash the Glasgow tradition of placing a cone atop Royal Exchange Square’s iconic Duke of Wellington statue have been announced. Due to be erected by the close of 2017, a glass box is to be created around the entirety of the statue to put a stop to pranksters climbing the plinth and placing traffic cones on the Duke’s head.

An official spokesperson announced: “The glass box will completely encase The Duke of Wellington in order to preserve the condition of the statue and to protect the public’s safety, resulting in a more enjoyable attraction for city residents and tourists alike.” Basically “Coney no dae that!!!”


Details of the project’s cost are yet to be confirmed, however, its creation is rumoured to save Glasgow Council in the realm of £10,000 per year – the price of removing the cone over 100 times annually.

The news comes as a surprising U-turn considering huge social media backlash previously derailing plans. In 2013, Glasgow City Council submitted planning permission to raise the statue’s plinth by 86cm as part of a £65,000 project to refurbish the monument, meaning that the head of Wellington (and that of his horse) would be out of reach of cone-wielding hands.


However, after thousands joined the ‘Save Wellington Cone’ social media campaign, signing a petition to oppose the move, officials quickly instructed officers to withdraw the planning application. Sculpted by Italian artist Carlo Marochetti and erected in 1844, the statue may have cemented itself into the backbone of Glasgow culture, attracting tens of thousands of visitors from around the world every year, but it still proves to be a sore spot for city officials, who deem the cone to project a “depressing image” of Glasgow.


In light of the news, the GlasgowLiving team took to the streets to gather Glasgow’s initial reactions to the decision:

“It’s one of Glasgow’s most important tourist attractions. Putting the statue in a glass box is like forcing Leo the Silent Raver to perform in a closed cardboard box! It’s just no right” said Wee Davey.

“Glasgow will work out a way to smash the box before they’ve even built the box.” said Simone.

“People are just going to start putting shitloads of cones on the box, aren’t they?” mused Tam.

Well, one thing’s for sure – the current sentiment in Glasgow is less than receptive, and if people do make Glasgow, people can just as well break Glasgow. Or glass boxes, for that matter.

***This article will be updated as and when new developments on the story are confirmed. Check back for more information and get in touch to let us know your thoughts as the story develops. ***