A Statue of Margaret Thatcher Went Up in Her Hometown Over the Weekend. Two Hours Later, It Had Been Egged
The statue has split public opinion since it was announced two years ago.
A statue of Margaret Thatcher, installed in her hometown of Grantham, was egged just two hours after it was erected on Sunday.
When the monument to the divisive British conservative, who was Prime Minister from 1979 to 1990, was announced, local opinion split on whether it would be a welcome addition to the cultural landscape of the town. It is accompanied by an exhibition on Thatcher’s life in a local museum.
“There has long been a conversation in Grantham about a more permanent memorial to the country’s first female Prime Minister who was an enormous political figure, both nationally and internationally,” said Graham Jeal of the Grantham Community Heritage Association (GCHA).
Some who are against the statue cite Thatcher’s ties to a decline of industry in the the area surrounding Grantham.
A Facebook group for an egg throwing contest was started when the statue was announced in 2020 and gained more than 13,000 members. Jeremy Webster, the deputy director of the University of Leicester’s Attenborough Arts Center landed the first egg on Sunday, an action that has been criticized by the University.
“The University of Leicester has a longstanding history of supporting art, fostering creativity, and protecting creative freedom,” the university said in a statement. “It does not condone any form of defacement and takes any act of defacement extremely seriously. This matter will be addressed in line with the university’s own procedures.”
There has been a subsequent report on Lincolnshire Live of a man selling eggs to throw at the memorial for £10 each.
Not all responses to the statue were as negative, and a number of people gathered to cheer as it was placed on its plinth.
“This memorial statue of the late Baroness Thatcher of Kesteven will be a fitting tribute to a truly unique political figure,” the leader of South Kesteven District Council, Kelham Cooke, said in a statement. “We must never hide from our history, and this memorial will be a talking point for generations to come.”
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