A golden cockerel which has watched over Cupar for two centuries has been replaced after thieves struck.
The local landmark on top of Cupar Burgh Chambers was snatched last September while contractors were working to convert the Fife Council-owned building into a holiday flat.
Scaffolding had been erected around the building, allowing cocky criminals to climb to a height of 80ft and make off with the blingy bird, which was part of a weather vane.
Now, at a cost of around £3,000, a new cockerel has been installed by Kirkcaldy joiners John Smart and Son, who have nearly completed the renovations.
Company director Lynn Watt said: “The cockerel flew back in and is now atop of the ball.”
She said the gold-leafed ornament had been vulnerable to thieves when the scaffolding was up.
“Whoever took it has obviously gained access by the scaffolding. The scaffolding isn’t there any more so if anyone wanted to steal it now they would have to climb 24 metres.
“It’s unlikely it will be stolen again.”
A £50 reward was offered for information leading to the return of the gilded fowl.
Meanwhile, police in Fife renewed their appeal to trace the thieves.
The weather vane is believed to have been added in 1823, eight years after the Burgh Chambers were built.
Proudly perched on the top of the building’s dome, the bird was restored to its former glory as part of a £600,000 project to carry out major repairs to the roof and stonework, and create a holiday apartment.
The refurbishment project was part-funded by Historic Environment Scotland and Heritage Lottery Fund through Fife Historic Buildings Trust.
Ms Watt said restoring the weather vane was part of the work.
“We were duty bound to replace it,” she said.
“The Cupar good and grand will be glad it’s back.”
A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said: “Police in Fife are investigating following reports of theft of a weather vane from the Town Hall building in Cupar.
“Enquiries are ongoing and anyone with information is asked to contact Cupar Police Station on 101 quoting incident reference 1472 of September 6.”