Anarchy in Gardenstown - how Sex Pistols guru was thrown out of a Highland village

MALCOLM McLaren, the godfather of British punk and former manager of the Sex Pistols, has been run out of a small Scottish fishing village after a blasphemous rant during his pitch to become their laird.

McLaren, 61, who was taking part in an ITV reality television show, The Baron, shocked locals at the annual strawberry fair in Gardenstown, Banffshire, when he called their village a "s**t-hole" and urged them to go and smoke large quantities of cannabis. He also declared: "Jesus was a sausage."

The two other contenders to become laird and hold the honourable title 13th Baron of Troup - Mike Reid, former star of EastEnders, and Suzanne Shaw, erstwhile singer with pop group Here'Say - had just finished their election speeches when McLaren began his tirade.

"I've been here a few days and I've found it absolutely boring. I'm sick to death of it," he began. "The cod have left this town and I don't blame them. Soon I'll be joining them."

Attempting to drown out a growing chorus of boos and catcalls from the close-knit religious community, McLaren shouted: "Gardenstown must smoke lots of ganga. As baron I will want a free Gardenstown. I will transform it into a heathen's paradise."

Michael Watt, the harbourmaster, who has attempted to integrate the celebrities into village life during their ten-day campaign, grabbed the microphone and remonstrated with a bemused McLaren.

Undeterred but puzzled by the angry shouts of "get him off", McLaren continued with his somewhat alternative manifesto, during which he said the harbour should be painted red and a wicker man built on the beach in which the remnants of the village's religious life (there are five churches for the 800 residents) should be burned.

"I want to declare a holiday, every year," he managed before Mr Watt pushed him away from the microphone.

McLaren forced his way back and declared: "Jesus is a sausage," before being bundled from the podium.

The Rev Donald Martin, a Church of Scotland minister, said: "There were a couple of hundred people at the fair. They were all horrified."

McLaren was escorted out of the village by the television crew and is now believed to be residing in a hotel in Aberdeen.

An ITV spokesman, attempting to put McLaren's views in "context", said: "He is a very outspoken character who believes in freedom of speech."

Filming of the programme, to be aired in the summer, is continuing without McLaren.


ON THE ROYAL FAMILY: "[They] are a brilliant metaphor for all that is pretentious, deluded, selfish and insincere about England"

ON THEFT: "Stealing things is a glorious occupation, particularly in the art world"

ON ROCK AND ROLL: "Rock and roll doesn't necessarily mean a band ... It's that question of trying to be immortal"

ON FORMER FRIEND AND SEX PISTOL JOHN LYNDON: "Not to be smart-arsed about it but, if you live in Malibu, where he does, it's a place where rock stars go to die"

ON TV TALENT SHOW THE X-FACTOR: "Talent needs three ingredients to make a real lasting impact - sex, subversion and style. The X-Factor does not find anyone with those"

ON CULTURE: "Our culture has become a notion of boredom that is bought and sold, where nothing will happen"

ON POLITICS: "I am not a politician. I do not wish to be treated like a politician. And, furthermore, I don't believe in politicians"

ON PUNK: "We never really sold records. What we sold was an attitude, which I guess in the end sold newspapers"

ON THE RECORD INDUSTRY: "All these kids are trying to make pop records only for one reason - to escape"

Back to the top of the page