'Worst piece of artwork ever:' Hated 13ft statue of Prince Philip to be torn down

27 March 2024, 11:50

Cambridge Council rule that hated Prince Philip statue must be pulled down
Cambridge Council rule that hated Prince Philip statue must be pulled down. Picture: google/alamy

By StephenRigley

A sculpture in Cambridge said to represent Prince Philip is to be pulled down after the city council branded it “possibly the poorest quality work” it had seen.

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The £150,000 13-ft bronze sculpture called 'The Don' is supposed to represent Prince Philip in his role as Vice Chancellor of Cambridge University.

A plaque under the sculpture reads: 'HRH Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh, Chancellor University of Cambridge 1977-2011.'

Cambridge City Council has now issued an enforcement notice for the statue to be removed as it doesn't have planning permission and has a "harmful material impact" on the appearance of the area.

The controversial statue said to represent Prince Philip
The controversial statue said to represent Prince Philip. Picture: google

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City planners refused permission for the statue to be displayed outside a new office block on Hills Road in 2014.

Nadine Black, Cambridge City Council public art officer said it was "possibly the poorest quality work that has ever been submitted to the council."

She added: "It is not site-specific and is a work already purchased and has no relationship to this site. It is too large a scale for the context of the space it will be located within and will compromise the quality of the new development."

Prince Philip was formerly vice-chancellor of Cambridge University
Prince Philip was formerly vice-chancellor of Cambridge University. Picture: alamy

The statue was originally attributed to Uruguayan sculptor Pablo Atchugarry, but he later disowned the piece.

Atchugarry, who is an internationally renowned sculptor, whose pieces have been sold at Christies and Sothebys in London, New York, Paris and Amsterdam, called the accusation it was his work "an abuse."

He said in 2014, "I am not the author of this sculpture, and it is an abuse that they had used my name. I wish somebody would apologise to me for this misunderstanding".

Cllr Katie Thornburrow said that nobody seemed to have a good word to say about it.

She added that she will "be glad to see it gone".

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