By Seb Dean from Apartment-hotels.com
This is a simple guide to some statues that you probably walk past every single day on your way to and from work, but don’t even notice! Sometimes we get so caught up in life that we stop noticing the details and we forget about the history behind beautiful things such as these statues. Enjoy!
#1- Fleet Air Arm
Victoria Embankment, SW1
The figure featured in this imposing statue depicts Daedalus – a Greek mythical figure who sculpted wings for himself and his son (Icarus) to escape Crete.
The story goes that Daedalus used wax to hold the feathers and Icarus flew too close to the sun, melting the feathers and causing him to drop to his death.
The statue was created by the famous James Butler RA who was also the creator of the Dolphins in Dolphin Square and is there to commemorate those that have fallen on the battlefield.
#2- Richard I
Parliament Square, SW1
One of the most intriguing statues in London is the Richard I statue in Parliament Square. The statue commemorates King Richard the Lionheart who spent the majority of his reign fighting in The Crusades.
What makes the statue interesting is that the sword of the statue was bent during the second world war by a falling bomb and has been left that way ever since!
#3 – The Boy David
Hyde Park Corner, SW1
The Boy David is a statue located on Hyde Park Corner and is there to commemorate The Machine Gun Corps. The statue was sculpted in 1919 by Derwent Wood with an inscription of “Saul hath slain his thousands but David his tens of thousands”.
The interesting story here is that Derwent Wood, the sculptor of the statue, went on after WWI to make masks for soldiers that had been disfigured during the war.
There is also a bitesize version of the statue on Cheyne Walk.
#4 – Roosevelt and Churchill – ‘Allies’
Bond Street, W1
A relatively recent statue, ‘allies’ was created by Lawrence Holofcener and was unveiled in 1995.
The statue was unveiled to mark 50 years of peace after WWII.
Roosevelt and Churchill helped to form the United Nations after they had defeated Germany in the war.
#5 – Sir John Betjeman
St Pancras Station, NW1
Sir John Betjeman was Poet Laureate and lived between 1906 and 1984.
The interesting story behind him is that, when working in Dublin during the 1940s, Sir John Betjeman was reportedly set to become a target of an IRA assassination because they thought he was a spy.
It is alleged that the IRA decided against the attack after they read his poetry.
#6 – The Christopher Columbus Statue
Belgrave Square, SW1
Perhaps needing no introduction is the Christopher Columbus statue in Belgrave Square.
Columbus was the famed explorer who discovered the new world.
The statue was given to the UK as a present from the people of Spain in 1992 and sits amongst lush greenery.
#7 – Southwark War Memorial
Borough High Street, SE1
The Southwark War Memorial was unveiled in 1924 and shows a soldier tramping through mud during WWI.
The statue was the inception of sculptor, Philip Lindsey Clark who went to war during WWI as a captain and won a DSO.
After the war finished, Philip Lindsey Clark went back to study at the Royal Academy.
We hope that you’ve enjoyed this article and that it gives you some things to look out for while you’re out and about in London. Sometimes, just looking around you can really brighten up your day.
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