Workington statue at risk of being lost forever
Last updated at 19:41, Thursday, 02 August 2012
Workington could lose one of its symbolic Uppies and Downies statues as efforts to repair it seem to have hit the buffers.
Allerdale council has been trying unsuccessfully for months to find a specialist to repair the Uppies statue after it was badly damaged by vandals.
Barbara Cannon, council deputy leader, this week said: “Officers haven’t found anyone who has the skill. It has to be sensitively repaired.
“I’m now concerned that it might not be repairable. Some people have damaged something that was meant to record for posterity one of Britain’s most ancient games. It’s very sad.”
The Uppies and Downies statues, which commemorate the town’s traditional Easter mass football game, were the last works created by Maryport sculptor Colin Telfer before failing eyesight forced him to give up the trade.
The pieces have been vandalised ever since they were unveiled in 2010 at the traditional hailing points at Workington Hall and the harbour.
The head of one figure on the coal-black Uppies statue was broken off last summer.
Police appealed for its return, believing it had been stolen, only to realise it had been handed in at the police station days earlier by a walker who found it in the park.
Weeks later the statue was attacked again, with one figure snapped off its plinth.
It has now been removed from its site.
Coun Cannon suggested last summer that the statues could be moved to the town centre to give them better protection.
But this week she said: “I’m getting to the point where I think it’s unlikely to happen.”
She said the answer may be commemorative plaques or boards instead.
Joe Sandwith, of Low Seaton, a supporter of the Downies, said he was gutted that the statue might not be repaired.
He added: “It was the one piece of street sculpture that actually meant something to the town.
“The people who have wrecked this are obviously nothing to do with the game.”
First published at 19:22, Thursday, 02 August 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
Have your say
Why do a small number of people, feel the need to go and smash up statues and memorials.When caught they should be named and shamed, and may to pay the repair bills.
The Uppies and Downies statue should be somehow mounted to that lump of steel outside HSBC bank- and then if vandals do try to get to it, at least there is a chance that the sub-human scum could be critically or fatally injured.
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