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Thursday, 24 July 2014

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David Bowie’s secret trip to Gretna

He waded into the war over Scottish independence but did David Bowie’s love of Scotland start with a visit to Gretna?

David Bowie photo
David Bowie

The owners of the Famous Blacksmith’s Shop said the rock legend who revealed at the Brit Awards that he was against Scottish independence – made a “secret” visit to the town’s wedding anvil in the autumn of 1991.

Staff at the tourist attraction still remember him dropping in - and his reluctance to be photographed near the anvil in case it prompted marriage rumours.

“We all got such a shock,” said Jean Duff, a long-serving member of staff and now part-time whisky taster. “Very few people walking around realised who he was as he strolled into the Famous Blacksmiths Shop to see the wedding anvil.”

Sadly, the media-savvy Thin White Duke declined to have his picture taken beside the iconic wedding anvil – worried that if the international media got hold of the story rumours would start circulating that he had secretly married.

He later married glamorous Somalian model Iman in a secret ceremony in Lausanne the following year.

At this week’s Brit Awards Kate Moss accepted Bowie’s Best Male Solo Artist award on his behalf and surprised the audience by delivering a message from the New York-based singer.

“Scotland, stay with us,” she said. “Perhaps his ‘over-the-anvil’ moment left a mark on Bowie and influenced his thinking,” said Famous Blacksmiths Shop marketing manager Lynda Denton. “I just wish we could have persuaded him to get THAT picture!”

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