Statues of Winston Churchill, Horatio Nelson, Earl Mountbatten of Burma and Oliver Cromwell, as well as the Cenotaph, are on a list of ‘contentious’ statutes compiled by Scotland Yard. The Telegraph has more.
The Cenotaph, Britain’s chief national war memorial, has been placed on a secret Scotland Yard list of “contentious statues” prone to attack because of their links to war, imperialism or slavery.
The former Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s statue in Parliament Square is also included on the list because of his claims that British imperialism was for the good of the “primitive” and “subject races”, although he is wrongly accused in it of murdering three million Indians.
The list has been uncovered by the think tank Policy Exchange through freedom of information requests as part of an investigation into what it claims is declining law and order and increasing squalor around the Palace of Westminster.
The report, Tarnished Jewel, cites police data that shows violent crime has risen two and a half times faster in the streets around Parliament than in London as a whole, and three times faster than in the borough of Westminster as a whole.
It says police have allowed serious potential security threats to develop in the area, while extreme right and left-wing protesters have been able to threaten MPs, ministers and journalists.
The report’s author, Andrew Gilligan, a former political aide to Boris Johnson and a journalist, said: “Nowhere else in Europe, with the possible exception of the Eiffel Tower, is more famous, or more emblematic of its nation. Yet what should be a showpiece has declined into a degree of squalor and disorder.”
The list of statues explains why they might be targeted by protesters including the Cenotaph, which it says “functions as the UK’s official national war memorial”.
Read More: Cenotaph on Scotland Yard’s Secret List of Suspect Statues