Dunbar bear sculpture to be lit up again following vandalism

A generous offer from an external lighting manufacturer is set to see The DunBear – the sculpture of a brown bear beside the A1 at Dunbar – illuminated again.

The offer of six new solar panels by Acrospire follows recent vandalism of the solar panels that provides the lighting for the five-metre-high steel sculpture.

The East Lothian visitor attraction has been subjected to repeated acts of vandalism, spoiling people’s enjoyment of the sculpture, which is a tribute to Dunbar-born naturalist and conservationist, John Muir, who played a key role in the establishment of National Parks in the USA.

On hearing of the vandalism and being aware of the enjoyment The DunBear brings to visitors and locals alike, Kevin Grigg, sales director at Acrospire offered the firm’s expertise, replacing the damaged solar panels free of charge.

Designed by renowned Scottish sculptor Andy Scott, who is also responsible for The Kelpies, The DunBear was erected in 2019 by Hallhill Developments and is lit up with different colours on key dates, such as Valentine’s Day and St Andrew’s Day. It forms the centrepiece of DunBear Park, a proposed 54.3-acre low carbon community that aims to include a range of commercial, community and residential uses.

Prior to the vandalism it was the intent to light up the sculpture in the colours of the Ukraine flag – yellow and blue – in solidarity with the people there. This will be attempted again once the new panels are installed.

Ken Ross from Hallhill Developments, which is responsible for The DunBear and is undertaking the DunBear Park development, said, “We cannot thank Acrospire enough for its very generous supply of six replacement solar panels. The vandalism we have experienced is deeply sad to see – especially at a time when we had planned to illuminate it in yellow and blue in support and solidarity of the people of Ukraine. We know that this sculpture is popular with the community and would request that it be vigilant and report any vandalism to the police if they see it happening again.”