North Devon Council received 177 letters supporting Verity. Here's a sample:
David Hancock, Ilfracombe: "Let's hope this statue is the first of many new and great things to come to Ilfracombe soon. We need to stop dwelling on the past and move forward."
Peter Rawle, Ilfracombe town councillor: "Yes, Yes, Yes."
Neil Easton, Driftwood Gallery, Ilfracombe: "This is an excellent idea not before time. It remains a great pity that Damien's interests don't extend to yachting as he would appear to be the only source of funding we will ever see for the marina, northern breakwater, ferry and all the other failed Ilfracombe dreams. Do not look a gift horse in the mouth."
Suzanne Walker, 77 High Street, Ilfracombe: "I say go for it. We need to bring this town back to life. I have young children and I believe this will give my children a better town to live in. This town is still so far back in the Dark Ages, having this sculpture will bring the town the interest it so badly needs. If nothing else we will have people talking about Ilfracombe again and in any sense that is a good thing."
Philip J Milton, West Down: "Overall I think it will be good for Ilfracombe and will attract visitors to North Devon keen to see it. Indeed I can see 'her' even becoming a fun fertility symbol so couples flock here to touch her. Better yet it could work in that being able to relax in our beautiful area may well help to make things happen for couples having difficulties."
Roy Thorne, Cotswolds: "I think it will make a brilliant start/finish marker for Ilfracombe Pilot Gig Club regattas. The best in the whole race season!"
Carol Turner, Ilfracombe: "What an amazing opportunity for Ilfracombe. I am sure this magnificent cultural statement will open the doors to many funding pathways for the regeneration of both the pier and our town in general. I feel we have been suffering from poverty of ambition for too long and like Verity with her sword we all need aim higher – and forwards! Let's get Verity, get the town development plan, get stronger and secure the future of our amazing town."
Charmain Lovett, Ilfracombe: "We all knew that Ilfracombe is in need of a massive overhaul and we are the laughing stock for other towns in North Devon as we known as a town full of chavs, smackheads, a rubbish high street and no parking … they aren't wrong! Thing is though if Ilfracombe go ahead with this statue they will be laughing on the other side of their faces when people worldwide want to visit Ilfracombe to see such a magnificent public work of art by Damien Hirst!"
Luke Faulkner, 17, from Ilfracombe: "Being a town which is home to an arts college I believe that young people need to be exposed to real pieces of high end art in the town, I believe it should be out of the question whether we have this piece or not – it should be a privilege to the people of the town to have this piece."
Stephanie Roe, Ilfracombe: "An original piece of artwork donated for free by one of the country's most talked about living artists. It is a no brainer really."
Bryan Drew, Brookdale Avenue, Ilfracombe: "As a resident of Ilfracombe and vice chair of governors at Ilfracombe Arts College I want to offer my support for this fantastic venture. Damien Hirst's work will undoubtedly boost our economy, raise our profile nationally and help to establish North Devon as, amongst its many other assets, a serious art destination. Imagine the pride in seeing national footage of the statue with our amazing harbour and landscape in the background. History will judge badly any decision that fails to grasp this unique opportunity with both hands."
To view related articles, click on the links at the top right-hand side of this page. POLL: Would you like to see Damien Hirst's 'Angel of the West' statue erected in Ilfracombe? Vote now at the top right-hand side of this page or click here.