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24 September 2014

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Southampton FC

Ted Bates' statue
Ted Bates' statue

Ted Bates statue pulled

The controversial statue of Saints legend Ted Bates is to be removed from its position at St Mary's Stadium less than a week after it was unveiled.

The statue of Ted Bates was unveiled last Saturday but many fans were outraged by what they see as a poor representation of the man who devoted 50 years of his life to the club, before his death in 2003

Critics pointed to poor a poor facial likeness in the £102,000 statue as well as the body, legs and arms appearing to be out of proportion.

Ian Brennan
Ian Brennan

The club will now investigate whether the existing statue can be altered, or whether to start the project again.

Chairman Leon Crouch said: "Ted was Southampton Football Club and we owe it to him to build a fitting statue."

Crouch added: "With hindsight some things could have been done differently, but this is not a time for recriminations. Let's just sit down and put things right.

Ian Brennan, the artist who created the statue of former Saints player and manager Ted Bates spoke to BBC South Today about the outcry that surrounded the unveiling of his work.

Brennan, who has worked as a sculptor for 27 years and has had commissions from the Royal Household, agreed that the criticism was justified:

"I'm a Saints fan myself and all I wanted to do was to create a great statue for a great man.  I wanted a brilliant sculpture of Ted."

He said that although the dimensions were technically accurate, outside St Mary's stadium, "...the perspective went and on the plinth he looks completely different."

He blamed the shortcomings not being rectified earlier in the production stage on the pressures of time: "I'm not blaming anyone but it was a very very tough schedule."

Brennan spent 18 months working on the statue, a comparatively short time to create such a piece and had the added difficulty of having to work soley from photographs.

However he insists it's not too late for adjustments to be made: "Its certainly do-able and I'd love the opportunity to make the adjustments to get the perspective right from the ground."

last updated: 21/03/07
Have Your Say
What do you think should happen to the Ted Bates statue?
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Danny Whitlock - Big Saints Fan
I new Ted and he would of cryed if he saw that statue. He would of said give the money to the local poor people instead

Sid Crowton - Birmingham Fan
please if you dont want it we could have it in Birmingham as we dont have any statues at all- Or stick it in your defence as it would be better than what you have now

Pete smith - Saints Fan
please remember beauty is in the eye of the beholder and though it is not beatiful i look forward to seeing it at the next game

Joe, Bristol
Glad it's been taken down. It bore an uncanny resemblance to Jimmy Hill! What gets me is that the sculptor complained about only having photos to work from. However, the artist who did the excellent Sir Tom Finney statue at Preston also only had photos to work from and it's a superb statue. Maybe we should get that guy instead of this clown?

Ben Melrose, Oxford
I think it's a fantastic statue. The resemberlance is fautless. All the people that disagree with me can't have seen it.

Wouldnt Southampton fans prefer the £100,000 go towards a player rather than a statue (regardless of its quality) ? Saying that though Saints have signed up statues before , the back 4 last time you were in the Premiership .

E.I Addio
Perhaps the statue could appear in Nick Parks next film or in the Saints defence it wouldnt look out of place .On a positive note it has made a lot of people happy well those who can see the funny side anyway...

A happy Pompey fan........
I think it should stay as a reminder of how embarrassing your side really is, kind of symollic.

Ian is a fantastic sculptor ,his work is fabulous,what went wrong with the statue surely cannot be down to him

Roger Bishop
What an absolute load of rubbish this "Thing" is. The sculptor shouldn't be paid for this pile of junk, and a professional sculptor should be sought. Forget all of the excuses, I cannot believe that 18 months work could be so bad.

john pendle

MB from Yorkshire
What a waste of money-couldn't he be whittled into looking like another Hants notary figure, like charles dickens, Jane austen of Gilbert White?

roger justice
should be pulled down. Typical effort by a second rate championship club.

marj williams
take it off the pedestal and place it at a lower level so proportions will look right.

depressed saints fan
Please remove it before the next home game. I can't stand any more humiliation.

Brian Marshall
Being a life long Saint's fan and present at the unvailing ceromany last Saturday evening it should be removed ASAP,rectified or replaced. Once again SFC is in the spotlight not for our our achievements on the pitch unfortunately,as we are once again the laughing stock of the 92 clubs in the the football league. I wonder what Ted Bates would have said had he been alive when this statue had been erected !!!!! "God this is not the man I see in the mirror daily while shaving"

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