Margaret Thatcher statue blocked 'over vandalism fears'
Ministers have blocked plans for a statue of Margaret Thatcher to be erected outside parliament over fears it will be a target for vandals, it has been reported.
The 10ft bronze of the UK's first female Prime Minister was dreamed up by a campaign group hoping to honour her memory, with plans submitted to Westminster City Council.
But the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Royal Parks Agency - which owns the strip of Parliament Square earmarked for the project - have lodged a formal objection to the plans.
They insist the family of the late Conservative grandee has not given permission, while mandarins in Whitehall are worried it will be vandalised by left wingers, according to The Sun.
The plans say the statue will strike “a resolute posture looking towards the Parliament with a stern gaze” but Lady Thatcher’s trademark handbag will be absent.
According to The Times, Carol Thatcher, the former Prime Minister’s daughter, has objected to the absence of her mother's iconic handbag on the £300,000 statue.
A Royal Parks spokesperson said: “Numerous times we have requested assurances from the applicant that they have approval from the family for the statue. To date we have not had those assurances.”
A Westminster City Council spokesperson said: “The council is unable to comment on outstanding planning applications. This proposal is currently being considered and a decision will be taken in due course.
“As with any planning application, the council considers proposals for new monuments based on each scheme’s merits and in accordance with our existing policies.”
Lady Thatcher died in 2013. According to tradition there should be a 10-year wait between the death of a public figure and the building of a memorial to them.
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