No takers for the Iron Lady's statue.
A statue of Margaret Thatcher, once hailed as Britain’s “Iron Lady”, is going a-begging with her own hometown, Grantham, not inclined to host it for fear of upsetting her critics.
The eight-foot white marble statue has had a chequered history. Commissioned by a committee of the House of Commons in 1998, it was intended to be installed in the Members’ Lobby to take its place along with those of other former prime ministers. But the House refused permission to erect it during her lifetime and, in 2002, it was temporarily moved to London’s Guildhall. As (bad) luck would have it, within weeks of it going on display a protester took a hammer to it and decapitated it. The jinxed statue was then put in storage in the Commons.
Recently, a move to offer to it Grantham Museum met with a nervous response. Apparently the Museum appeared reluctant to have anything to do with it after being warned that, given Lady Thatcher’s divisive legacy, it could be “asking for trouble”. When the news broke, embarrassed officials claimed that it had never been formally offered to them.
“The comment about the statue being offered to the museum is factually baseless and we have not been in discussions with the owners of the statue to discuss it being offered to Grantham,” the museum said.
It didn’t say what its response would be if an offer was made. Clever!