Letter to the editor

Dear Editor,

Please place the following correction in the “Arrow” when you can:

CORRECTION: In part 15 of “The History of Finchley” (November 2010) I referred to “La Délivrance” statue at Henly’s Corner, and said that in August 1987 the “Evening Standard” had revealed that the model for the statue was Louise Curson, by 1987 aged 82.  It seems however that this elderly lady may have become confused about events in her teenage years and I am indebted to Peter Pickering of the Finchley Society for the following additional information which results from a most informative talk given to Finchley Society members in November 2007.

Historian Martin Bolton stated that the statue was begun in 1914 and that Louise Curson, born in 1905, could not have been the model as she was only nine at the time, and living in London.  The distinguished French sculptor, Emile Guillaume (1867-1942), probably used a French model for the project, which could well have been inspired by Marianne, the symbol of the French Revolution in 1792.

“La Délivrance” was actually the name of the raised sword and appears as such on the hilt of our Finchley statue, and on commemorative medals and other statues made from the same clay model.  The special significance of deliverance for the French was that in 1871 Paris had been besieged by the Germans and they feared a repeat in 1914, from which the victory at the first Battle of the Marne saved them.

I am pleased to set the record straight.

Stewart Wild

[Ed: Thanks for the update and I have also included it at the end of the November article.]

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