IN a mystery befitting his greatest character, the pub named after Sherlock Holmes writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has been dramatically renamed.
Drinkers in the popular Conan Doyle pub, on the edge of Edinburgh’s New Town, were astonished to find it magically re-branded - as the JK Rowling.
Owners Nicholson’s Pubs were staying tight-lipped on Sunday - but it is understood the swift moniker change is an elaborate stunt for Hogmanay.
As news of the change spread on social media yesterday, speculation was rife as to the reasoning behind it.
Lucy Barker tweeted: “Hello @Nicholsonspubs, why has the Conan Doyle pub been renamed the @jk_rowling?”
Others were left less than enamoured at the prospect of a permanent name change - prompting fledgling campaign calls.
“The JK Rowling’, famous for being close to the birthplace of...erm... Sir Arthur Conan Doyle!!! Bad move people! #ChangeItBack,” tweeted Lord Wobbly.
Not only has the pub been emblazoned with its new name, but the elaborate gimmick includes a stand-in sign.
It depicts Harry Potter author Rowling, also synonymous with the city, sitting at a table by a window.
In front of the billionaire author is a notepad while she appears to be tucking in to a pub meal.
The pub was named after the great Scots storyteller Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle who was born in nearby Picardy Place in 1859.
A bronze statue to his most famous character Sherlock Holmes overlooks the pub in York Place.
Rowling famously wrote the best-selling Harry Potter books at The Elephant House, a mile away in Edinburgh’s Old Town.
What she makes of the stunt was unclear last night - as was whether it includes the pub serving butterbeer, a favourite tipple of the characters in her books.
“I can’t say anything about it but all will be revealed tomorrow,” said a Nicholson’s spokeswoman.