Barbados News

Lord Nelson statue to be removed from the city

The Barbados government says it will remove the statue of Lord Nelson from the National Heroes Square in the heart of the capital, Bridgetown.

Minister with responsibility for Culture, John King, said that the Cabinet of Prime Minister Mia Mottley had agreed to the relocation of the statue of Vice Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson.

He said the decision was made in light of the fact that substantial consultations were carried out about two decades ago by the National Heroes Square and Development Committee as well as the Committee of National Reconciliation, which both recommended that the statue should be relocated.

The Cabinet has also agreed that there should be further public consultations with respect to the identification of a location for the statue, taking into account existing recommendations.

A government statement said that it is intended that the removal and determination of a new location for the statue would take place during the Season of Emancipation, which ends on August 23 and was inviting submissions from the public in that regard.

The bronze statue of Lord Nelson at the top of Broad Street in the capital city of Bridgetown was erected on 22 March 1813 in the area known as Trafalgar Square, opposite Parliament Buildings. The statue predates Nelson Column in Trafalgar Square in London by nearly 30 years.

Nelson visited Barbados in 1805 and was considered a hero by locals of the day for his battles against the French who controlled some of the other islands in the Caribbean.

The removal of the statue comes at a time when the global anti-racism movement sparked by the death at the hands of police in the United States of George Floyd has forced many people in Europe and other countries to confront uncomfortable truths about their pasts.

A number of monuments with links to colonialism and slavery continue to be the target of anti-racism protesters.

CMC

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