South Africa: Just Nuisance's Stolen Cap and Collar to Be Replaced On Heritage Day

24 September 2019

Simon's Town's iconic dog statue, Just Nuisance, will receive a new cap and collar on Heritage Day, after his originals were ignominiously stolen in May.

The Great Dane is valorised in Jubilee Square, at the coastal suburb's naval base, for a colourful life either sprawled out on a naval officer's bed or, as legend has it, for being a regular train passenger.

He is best known for lifting morale during World War 2 with antics such as scrounging for food from sailors, or standing at full height with his paws on the shoulders of somebody causing trouble.

He was eventually "enlisted" into the Royal Navy to resolve his penchant for train travel, so that he could get the free rail pass which other naval officers received and the conductors would no longer be so peeved with his gadding about.

In May, someone stole his hat and collar and nobody came forward for the R5 000 reward on offer for the return of the items.

A dog food company called JOCK decided to step in to help restore his dignity and commissioned artist Jean Doyle and a team to replace his accessories.

Doyle told News24 that she had been hard at work with a team, including fettler Vuyani Qondani, who was tasked with recreating the hat.

It also included patina artist Greg Breach, who had to match the new hat and collar's colour with Just Nuisance's body, which had become weathered since he was first placed there. Art fans can see JOCK's videos of the process here.

Nuisance was given the rank of Ordinary Seaman on Friday, August 25, 1939, and was later promoted to 'Able Seaman', according to Simon's Town's website.

He was euthanised eventually after suffering from great pain, and was given a proper naval burial.

Doyle said she was looking forward to the reveal of Just Nuisance's restoration on Wednesday at 11:00.


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