OH dear. Another day, another letter whingeing about Verity.
Let's face it, of any work of art, there will be some people who like it, some who loathe it and quite a few who are indifferent to it.
Personally, I would not give the Mona Lisa house room – that knowing smirk would drive me mad. And there is probably someone, somewhere who likes the Landmark Theatre – the architect's mother, at least. So, if you don't like Verity, accept it that there are people who do.
Then there's the argument that we should have something more representative of Ilfracombe. Well, we could. We still can. There's plenty of space around town where we could erect another art work. So, if you believe this, put your hand in your pocket and pay for it. I'll even add a few bob myself.
If you do, I hope you will buy something that will attract as much attention as Verity. The day after she went up, one national newspaper had a centre spread showing her and our beautiful harbour. The same paper's magazine section had a half page talking about her. Money couldn't buy this publicity and, if it could, our little town couldn't afford it.
When the town council voted on the matter, all but one voted in favour. Our councillors are sensible people and I do not doubt that they sounded out local opinion before voting.
When North Devon District Council asked for the views of the public, they received 100 letters against Verity and 177 in favour. That, in itself is a resounding majority, but it probably understates the number in favour, as it is well known that people are more likely to write if they oppose something than if they support it.
Since Verity went up, the Quay has been almost impassable most of the day.
The shops and cafés have been doing a roaring trade. Chimes, one of the restaurants our town supports, had to turn away potential customers on a Sunday in October. Unprecedented.
By all means tell your friends how awful the statue is, but urge them to come and see for themselves to make up their own minds, and, while they are here, to enjoy our lovely town, its beautiful views, its quirky shops, its excellent restaurants, and, its friendly, if somewhat opinionated, people.