Spruced up ‘tyre man’ ready for road trip

You can’t keep a good tyre man down. That’s what Manly Council in Australia is coming to terms with half a year after its order to remove a much loved local icon was carried out. The ‘tyre man’, a dummy who sat atop a tyre-ringed pole in the Sydney beachside suburb for more than 80 years, was taken down last August after his deteriorating condition was judged a hazard to passing pedestrians. But instead of disappearing forever, tyre man is back – and he’s off on holidays before resuming his vigil over Manly.

Sydney’s Daily Telegraph newspaper shares that tyre man’s head has been restored to its former splendour and will soon be reunited with a brand new body. The octogenarian’s cranium enjoyed three months’ pampering at the hands of students from a nearby school, St Paul’s Catholic College. Their restoration work was guided by vintage photos showing tyre man in his prime; these were obtained from local newspaper the Manly Daily.

According to St Paul’s visual arts co-coordinator Christopher Boylan, the restoration has given tyre man a new lease of life. “He looks like a young 20-year-old in his prime,” the Daily Telegraph quoted Boylan as saying. “He’s got some really nice new sideburns. He looks like he’s ready for another 40 years on the pole.”

Once rejoined, the restored head and new plastic and fibreglass body – the old one was deemed beyond repair – will be taken on a jaunt up the New South Wales coast, visiting Byron Bay, Port Macquarie and Port Stephens. Friends, admirers and the plain curious alike will be able to follow his wanderings on a ‘Tyre Man Manly’ Facebook page. Upon his return, tyre man will settle down to a more sedentary life in a new home not far from where he spent the best part of the 20th Century. The Manly depot of the UltraTune fast-fit chain will welcome tyre man as its mascot.

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