The Oliver Observations

Rony’s Cronies and Sheffield’s Royal Statues

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I’m afraid blogging has been anorexically light over the last couple of weeks, mainly because I’ve been busy with a couple of big projects at work, meaning my evenings feel reminiscent of this classic Simpsons clip.

However given the number of people who’ve kindly taken the time to keep checking back here, I really must make more time to post things, and have a few ideas up my sleeve (along with a watch and some fluff) for the coming weeks.

In the meantime, should anyone be desperately having withdrawal symptoms from tangent historical anecdotes I did appear on Radio Sheffield this morning.
I was on the ‘Rony’s Friends’ section of Rony Robinson’s programme in which a panel discuss the day’s news (I can’t believe they missed a trick in not calling it ‘Rony’s cronies’).

It was the first time I’d been on the show in that capacity, so on being told before hand we’d be discussing the issues of the day, I hastily tried to work out some nuanced opinions on Latin American geo-politics or the state of the vacant Vatican.
I needn’t have worried, as the news Rony focuses on tends to be a bit more light hearted – including favourite anecdotes about queuing, given the queues for tickets ahead of Saturday’s FA match in Barnsley, and the likely sex of the royal baby
However, along with fellow guest Janet Blackburn, who has the rather enviable job of managing Haddon Hall, we managed to shoehorn in various references, only extremely vaguely related to the headlines – ranging from Queen Victoria to Keira Knightley via Gilbert and Sullivan and the histories of Haddon Hall and the University of Sheffield.

Should anyone still be interested, the programme, at least for the moment, can be found here.
We’re on from 35.40 onwards.


For completism I’ll note that I should have taken up Rony’s bet that the statue of Edward VII which stands, usually crowned with pigeons, in Fitzalan Square isn’t Sheffield’s only Royal Statue.

As my colleague Heather reminds me there is a statue of Queen Victoria in Endcliffe Park, which the excellent ‘Public Art in Sheffield’ pages on Sheffield Hallam University’s website tell me is even by the same sculptor, Alfred Drury.

I also now remember, and the Victorianweb site confirms, there’s at least one statue (I think two) of Queen Victoria on the exterior of Sheffield City Hall, along with a rather weary or condescending looking bust inside.
If anyone knows of any more Royal statues or busts in Sheffield – George III, Elizabeth I, King Arthur…do let me know.


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