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A man has just been prosecuted for scaling a 19th Century Whitehall statue of a Grade II listed statue of Prince George, Duke of Cambridge (pictures of him doing it here), causing £5,000 worth of damage by breaking off its sword.

According to Wikipedia, the Duke (who some might think was a bit of an embarrassment to the modern Duke of Cambridge, Prince William, who is both a modern man and an army officer ) earned a reputation for being resistant to doctrinal change and for making promotions based upon an officer’s social standing, rather than his merit. Under his command, the British Army became a moribund and stagnant institution, lagging far behind its continental counterparts” and the statue is “ somewhat ironically, positioned outside the front door of the War Office that he so strongly resisted”. So not London’s best loved statue then!

The suggestion that the man, who has a degree in tourism, had mental problems was rejected even though, despite the cold weather, he stayed up there completely naked for 3 hours and he broke his own teeth biting the statue. Next month, no doubt, the sword will be mended and the statue will be made as good as new but the man has been jailed for 12 weeks.

No point in labouring the issue but it is surely worth asking how does that all fit in with Priddy where rather more than a sword was broken, there is zero prospect of any repair and the monument was vastly more significant and well-regarded and four thousand years older?


December 2012

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