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The furore over the statue of Edward Colston has resulted in renewed calls for the removal of statues and commemorative plaques relating to controversial historical figures responsible for and profiting from oppression and slavery. These include Cecil Rhodes, Clive of India and Churchill. Undoubtedly times have changed and people rightly question whether good deeds can possibly offset heinous crimes.

In our view a commission should be set up to identify such statues and then for mediation to take place between protestors and the owners of the statues, whether they be colleges, town councils or government departments. Mediation would be ideal in such cases, avoiding protests, violence and criminal damage.