Islanders react positively to Liberation family statue

A NEW Liberation anniversary statue has been attracting a lot of interest, with the reaction largely positive.

The statue of the wartime family was unveiled at the Guernsey Information Centre on Sunday.

The aim is for people to interact and hold hands with it.

Sculptor Mark Cook said Sunday’s unveiling went wonderfully, with a spirited speech by former Bailiff Sir Richard Collas.

‘Feedback from the general public has all been really positive. It seems they like the intimate size of it, that you can interact with it and that it fits in well with the space,’ he said.

Mr Cook does not know where it will move to, but the statue was designed so that it could be moved in future if required.

Many passers-by in Town yesterday stopped to look.

Ann Robilliard said: ‘It’s not at all threatening because it’s at ground level. There is a gentleness about it. Somebody put their heart into that.’

Initially she interpreted it as the family’s last moments before the children were evacuated and said where it moves to could change the meaning.

‘If it is put at the White Rock then it will seem like the children are leaving, which might not be the best welcome for people arriving. But it could be post-Liberation because the children don’t have suitcases. He looks as if he’s in uniform and she looks quite happy.’

She said one criticism was that the statue and surrounding trees were being suffocated by the adjacent hedging.

Tom Welch said the statue was very rustic but complemented its current surroundings.

Having seen it online, Carl Gleeson said he thought it looked better in person, although its tucked-away position was 'a

little strange’.

Susie Sampson said she admires anybody who can sculpt to that standard.

‘I tell you, what’s rather good is the jacket,’ Mrs Sampson said.

‘The [lady’s] hand is special, it is brilliantly done. I hope the yobs don’t throw stones at it.’

Charles Evans said that without any words it was hard to tell what it is. ‘Some kind of information board would be good.’

With Town regeneration plans and the intention to change the information centre’s function, it is expected that the statue may be moved in future.

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