Stamford couple forced to hide Michelangelo’s David behind bush after complaints

Joan Burgess with her statue of Michelangelo's David. Photo: SM210611-045ow.jpg
Joan Burgess with her statue of Michelangelo's David. Photo: SM210611-045ow.jpg
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FOR more than 500 years Michelangelo’s David has been admired by all but one couple say they have been forced to move their replica of the statue following complaints it was upsetting.

Clive and Joan Burgess put the statue outside the front door of their new home in Edmonds Close, Stamford.

But within days of moving in the couple were told by the warden of the sheltered housing complex, owned by South Kesteven District Council, “people did not want to look at him”.

Now the couple have hidden the statue behind a shrub and a patio set in the garden of neighbour Sue Cullen.

The couple are shocked the statue has created such a stir.

Mr Burgess, 71, said: “It is a timeless piece of art.”

Mrs Burgess, 64, said: “The warden asked us to move him as people didn’t want to look at him. They think it is not tasteful.

“It was offending folk but I can’t see the reason behind it.

“I heard someone was going to buy a pair of pants and put them on him.”

Mr and Mrs Burgess have also moved a small water feature of another classical piece, a replica of the Manneken Pis statue, of a little boy urinating, which was also outside their front door. It now stands in their kitchen.

The couple, who moved into their ground floor flat in May, brought David and the Manneken Pis from their former home in Baston Road, Greatford.

Mr and Mrs Burgess, who used to run the O’Brien Arms, in St Paul’s Street, Stamford, bought the £100 statue from a garden centre five years ago.

Neighour Sue said: “There has been such a hoo-ha over this. It is a statue, it’s fabulous.

“You are not telling me that children don’t see worse than that on television.”

A council spokesman said: “We didn’t deem it to be offensive however we did explain that several residents had expressed that they were upset by it.

“Our understanding is that we didn’t instruct for the statue to be moved we simply passed on the concerns raised with us and the owners agreed to move it.”