Why plan for heroic moves?
Thursday 12th September 2013, 4:00PM BST.
‘ISSY’ would be dizzy if he were still around today. While tribute organisers are keen to mark the 200th anniversary of the death of great Guernseyman Sir Isaac Brock, who went on to become a national hero of Canada, progress on a memorial for the major-general is becoming a far less distinguished affair.
You would think that raising a lasting monument to our famous forefather, whose name ironically is internationally synonymous with that of action and determination, would be easy enough… but sadly not.
As we revealed last week, after much deliberation – including about the direction his 7ft 6in likeness should face – the Brock bronze will now be permitted to stand proud on the northern plinth at Market Terrace. Yet despite this relative progress, planners will only commit to allowing the great man a two-year tenure.
Quite apart from the news coming as the main fund-raising push begins; the potential extra future cost and complications this could incur for the privately-funded project; or the somewhat disrespectful feel about the whole business, is this really the best way to go about erecting statues?
Surely if it has been decreed that Brock, hero of Upper Canada for his actions in defending the country from America in the War of 1812, deserves the spot, why even countenance having to move him a couple of years later?
Planning puts the temporary consent down to the fact that adjoining plinths may be populated at some stage. It would then need to ‘consider the collective position, orientation and relationship’ of any statues or sculptures.
Really? So if we were to decide it’s high time for an installation honouring fellow local legend Matt Le Tissier in front of HMV, Brock might need to be rotated? It’s hard to believe Le God would like to see that happen to the poor old soldier.
Alternatively, if no one else is put forward then, bicentennial or not, Brock might have to ship out anyway.
Needless to say the ‘rent-a-plinth’ idea has not gone down well with islanders keen to do the local hero proud, as well as to see the empty platforms in front of the markets used properly at long last.
Come on planners. Surely such an impressive ambassador for our island deserves putting on a pedestal… permanently.