William of Orange Statue – Brixham

PRINCE WILLIAM OF ORANGE STATUE – BRIXHAM

I don’t know if you’ll find this interesting or not, but today I learnt a snippet of information about the statue of Prince William of Orange (William III of England) on the harbour side in Brixham. It’s not the usual historical stuff about his landing with an armada + army to eventually claim the crown of England, which is well documented on various web-sites I’ve seen, no this bit of info is rather more about the monument itself (erected 1889).

 

http://www.torbay.gov.uk/index/leisure/heritage/brixham-history.htm

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/william_iii.shtml

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/civil_war_revolution/william_iii_03.shtml

Firstly, to document where the following info’ comes from; well its a little less than first-hand, not even second-hand, and it probably wouldn’t stand up to cross examining in a court of law … but please bear with me :-

I work with a colleague, who has a friend, who’s Mother was born near to, and in later years had a 2nd home in Brixham as well as her main home up here in Warwickshire (Royal Leamington Spa as it happens, just to keep a very tenuous link to the monarchy). Well, my workmate used to visit his friend’s mother’s home in Brixham when he was a child …. still with me ? …. good, ’cause I think I’m still just about keeping tracks of this as I write.

Well, it seems the lads of Brixham in the previous generation to my workmates-friends-mother (or it could have been 2-generations before her) used to use the statue of our esteemed monarch as target practice, throwing stones at the quite frankly pretty large stationary object … It couldn’t have been hard to hit! … However, one such throw must have been particularly accurate, as it hit and removed William’s nose and to this day the statue stands noseless !  …. He was rendered rather squat featured, even ugly, just proving that vandalism isn’t anything new !

I wonder if the culprit was ever apprehended and brought to book. Could he have been charged with treason for defacing (or should that be de-nosing) a former King of England? 

Unfortunately, the two pic’s I took don’t really show his face very well, but if you’re in Brixham take a look [ However, I found an image on flickr (above) that shows this perfectly! (thanks to DaveJG (offline)’s photostream)] …. it’s only an anecdotal piece of history, but almost as interesting as the traditional history that Brixham is justly proud of.

A slightly silly post, but what the hey ….

I hope you enjoyed my scribblings.

Gary.

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