The story of one man saving
another from being gored by an enraged bull has been told for hundreds of
years in Scotland. William Rule saved Robert the Bruce, Scotland’s beloved
king, from a charging bull when he grabbed the animal by the horns and
flipped it to the ground, breaking its neck. Robert the Bruce knighted Brave
William “Sir Turn-e-bull” out of gratitude. As a reward for his feat,
William was given lands in Bedrule and dubbed Sir TURN-E-BULL (Turnbull).
Centuries of persecution drove countless members of the Turnbull Clan out of
their beloved homeland and forced many more to change their names in an
often-futile effort to escape execution. The Turnbulls became Trimbles,
Trumbulls, Turnballs, and Trumbles. The names may have changed, but the
legacy remained as strong as the man who turned the bull.
story is about another man who conquered a raging bull.
a day that began like any other, Constable Derek Turnbull had no idea he
would be called to relive history. Hundreds of years after his ancestor
saved the king, Turnbull was called to a residential area where an enraged
bull had escaped. Turnbull saw the bull jump a hedge and head straight for
an elderly man. The policeman displayed the bravery and selflessness of his
ancestor when he stepped in front of the charging bull and lifted the man to
“It must be in my genes,”
Recently, Turnbull was
honored with a Chief Constable’s Commendation for his selfless act.
“Constable Turnbull acted with complete disregard for his own safety, and
this was an act entirely driven with the intention of protecting another’s
life,” a Lotian and Borders Police statement said.
Less than an hour away, a
monument is being constructed to commemorate the heroic act of William
Turnbull and to honor the bravery of Scotland’s border people – people like
The statue will be
one-and-half-times life size and will capture the moment when William Rule
grabbed the bull by the horns to turn it to the ground. The Turning of the
Bull monument has been commissioned by the Turnbull Clan Association and
will be placed in the courtyard of the Hawick Heritage Hub. The Turning of
the Bull monument and the Hawick Heritage Hub are part of the nationally
recognized Heart of Hawick Project, designed to bring thousands of
international visitors and genealogy pilgrims to the borderlands in
To learn more about the
Turnbull of the Bull Monument or to contribute to the monument fund, visit
Turnbull Clan Association
[email protected] - (+1) 919-361-5041