Richard the Lionheart

Lord Norton

3769248038_c12c3861d8_mIn a comment on the previous post, ladytizzy refers to the restoration work undertaken to the statue of Richard I that stands  in Old Palace Yard in front of the Peers’ Entrance to the House of Lords.  The work, to return the statute to its original glory, is now complete.  I watched a workman remove the  remaining boards round it this morning.  Further details, and the Flickr pictures to which ladytizzy refers, can be found here. 

The statue, which was erected at its present site in 1860,  is of interest to me because it stands below my office window.  My window is to the top right, and just out of sight, of the picture.   I did a post last year showing my cramped desk (albeit, as of today, much tidier than in the picture!).  The cramped working space is more than compensated for by the fact that from the window I can look out on Westminster Abbey as well as the statute of Richard I.  Also adding to the aesthetic attraction is the fact that temporary security cabins erected in Old Palace Yard, on the corner of St Stephen’s Entrance, to screen visitors to the Palace, have also been removed.  The only eyesore remains the corus barriers which regrettably remain necessary in these troubled times.

8 comments for “Richard the Lionheart

  1. 21/08/2009 at 8:37 pm

    For some reason, and I really don’t know why, this statue has resonated with me. I have also learned what a corus barrier is!

    As compensation for working in London goes, you have done well. All I have is 30+ miles of countryside, relieved by an horizon composed of the Cleveland Hills. Ah, well.

    Ps Grammar police can stop here – I was brought up to write ‘an’ when used with a noun beginning with ‘h’.

  2. lordnorton
    21/08/2009 at 10:52 pm

    ladytizzy: It is quite an impressive piece of work. On the view, it is swings and roundabouts. In Hull, I have a very spacious, modern office, but I look out my window on a car park. As I spend most days every year in my office in Hull, it is good to get to Westminster. On grammar, you would clearly have been with those favouring ‘an hereditary peer’ on Earl Ferrer’s amendment.

    • Croft
      24/08/2009 at 1:33 pm

      Surely as a professor and a peer you get to look out on the VIP section of the Hull Uni car park 😉

      On grammar, I remember reading of at least one minister who refused to read papers from his civil servants if they split an infinitive.

      As it seems more likely than not that this security scare or another – governments do seem rather good at finding a new ‘threat’ whenever the old one runs its course – will continue for the foreseeable future it’s about time that parliament decided on some more permanent and visually sensitive protection. Pedestrianising the area outside parliament and using ‘mock’ rought iron posts/railings on the edge of this area would seem a possible solution.

      Richard I spent barely any time in England but he did establish the ‘three lions’ (originally two) as the symbol of England.

  3. franksummers3ba
    23/08/2009 at 1:20 am

    Richard the Lionheart is so very much the essence of what we have trouble accepting as a consensus and sythnesis which could have ever existed:
    1.He had the attribute of an animal with all its aminmist implications in his nomme de guerre (though lions are very Biblical).
    2.He is associated with the second or third greatest body of romances in British Popular cutlure.
    3. He loved war, celebration and women in several senses.
    4.He was a convinced Christian and quite serious about the whole thing.

    These four facts about him blend with others and I am not sure what I really knew about him when I was four. But as a lad of four I surely thought that anytime his image or name came up he was by far the best king. Arthur was never really belived to have existed by most of the grown-ups in my life and none of the others had names that could ever compete with Lionheart. I don’t know if that statue was the main one I looked upon in wonder but I imagine it was one of them.

  4. Kyle Mulholland
    23/08/2009 at 1:47 am

    You don’t think… if this Reform bill goes through, and life barons can renounce their peerages, that Lord Mandelson will be back in the Commons, leading the charge against Cameron’s government?

    • 23/08/2009 at 4:40 pm

      Can’t see the unions, what will be left of the MPs, or the popular vote backing him, so that’s a no! A pity, he brings an earthy je ne sais quoi

      • Kyle Mulholland
        24/08/2009 at 3:10 pm

        There is somewhat of a sartorial elegance about Mandelson that is missing from most politicians (of course, Lord Norton excepted!). I thought the unions were just sheep now, the TUC is still supporting Labour with money even though it doesn’t agree with any of their policies any more.

  5. lordnorton
    24/08/2009 at 7:28 pm

    Croft: It is indeed one of our VIP car parks (i.e. one where you have to pay more for a guaranteed space than the larger car parks where a space is not guaranteed and the parking fee therefore significantly less). Mind you, I suppose my office at the Lords also overlooks a VIP car park – the main Lords car park. I know it is prime car parking space, but there are relatively few parking spaces. We don’t have a large underground car park, unlike the Commons. On security, I could not agree more. I very much favour pedestrianising Abingdon Street.

    Franksummers3ba: “He loved war, celebration and women in several senses.” There are some who may not agree on all three. As Croft mentions, he also spent little time in England.

    Kyle Mulholland: Even if the Bill gets through in its existing form, I am not quite sure what the attraction would be for Lord Mandelson to renounce his title. There is much media speculation, but I am not clear as to whether he would find it a particularly enticing prospect. On your point about sartorial elegance, I don’t think you should except me at all!

Comments are closed.