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the-fourth-plinth

model_hotel.jpgIt’s time to bring this farce to an end. The Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square has been abused, in the supposed name of art, for too long now. November of this year saw the erection of "Model Hotel 2007" (pictured left), by Thomas Schutte, a few sheets of coloured glass, and some metal rods; this replaced the eyesore more commonly known as "Alison Lapper Pregnant" by Marc Quinn. Rather than commissioning any further pieces of artwork the Mayor of London should begin a campaign to raise the statue originally intended for that plinth: King William IV.

King William IV reigned from 1830 to 1837, during which time he played a key role in the poor law reform that led to the Reform Act of 1832, also under his reign slavery was abolished (even though he had previously spoken against this) and child labour laws established. He was the first truly constitutional monarch of Great Britain and he also served admirably (no pun intended) for his country in the Royal Navy. Thus qualifying him for his place in Trafalgar Square.

Yet it is highly unlikely that the current Mayor, Ken Livingston, would have high regard of someone who was a champion of the poor and who held the people of this country sovereign. It is also doubtful that he’d even allow the statue to be placed there as originally intended, even if it were privately funded, let alone publicly! But the real reason for not allowing the erection of a statue to someone who achieved so much could be the embarrassment it would cause to our current crop of politicians.