Prince Consort’s new Queen joins him after self-isolating

THE Prince Consort at a St Martin’s art gallery has found a new Queen.

After finding a decorated stone on the wall of their house at Les Hubits des Haut during the first lockdown, retired dentist Sam Marsh and wife Marion, decided to take things further by adding decorated pieces of their own.

Others entered in to the spirit by making contributions and the art gallery, which soon consisted of more then 100 stones, became a go-to place for walkers.

Guarding over the stones were The Prince Consort and his Queen – gnomes produced by B&Q in 2012 to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.

Over the years they had faded and Mr Marsh rejuvenated them with a coat of paint.

However, in April, the Prince Consort was left alone when his Queen disappeared.

‘I think the gnome nabbers were probably at work and she ended up in a hedge somewhere,’ said Mr Marsh.

‘I went around the lanes in an effort to find her but with no luck.’

All was not lost, however.

Sam and Marion Marsh have a collection of stones and pebbles that have been painted mainly by children on the wall near their house in St Martin's. (Picture by Tony Curr, 29211941)

In 2012 the gnomes became a bit of cult item and B&Q in the UK sold out of them really quickly.

Mr and Mrs Marsh’s daughter, Emma White, who lives in Brighton, asked her parents to send her some.

Mr Marsh made a visit to the Admiral Park store where he carried out her wish, while buying a pair for himself at the same time.

When Mrs White read of the Queen’s disappearance in the Guernsey Press she decided that one favour deserved another and she chose to return her Queen to her parents in Guernsey.

‘She had to go in to self-isolation for 14 days but now she is enjoying the fresh air of St Martin’s on our front wall,’ said Mr Marsh.

Now with another lockdown, Mr Marsh said the art gallery was open again.

He has repainted some of the stones that had become jaded and people were again leaving their own there.

‘Somebody recently left a candlestick which it looks as though was made at pottery class,’ he said.

‘Stones were turning up last year on an almost daily basis and in the end I donated some of them to the display at Guernsey Museum.

‘People would stop to look at them whilst walking past, though this year the weather hasn’t been as good.’

He said he and his wife hoped the display would put a smile on people’s faces.

‘I think it gives people a destination – particularly when they are walking with children.’

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