Antiques Market Stallholders Accused of Disrespect to Hogarth

Statue of artist crowded out by marquees

The statue of the artist and his dog crowded by the market stall The statue of the artist and his dog crowded by the market stall

Concerns have been raised by a number of people, including leading local historians, about the risk posed to the statue of William Hogarth by the proximity of market stalls.

At last Sunday’s (12 September) Antique and Vintage Market on Chiswick High Road, the statue of the artist and his dog was squeezed in between two marquees set up by sellers at the market. When the market organiser was questioned on this she said the location of the plot had been specifically licensed by Hounslow Council’s Licensing Department.

Local councillor John Todd said he shocked to see this important statue and surrounding area being treated in this way. He described the statue as being smothered and said that in his view there was a risk of damage to the palette and paint brush which have had to be repaired before. He added that he thought the location of the two stalls was inappropriate.

Fears have been raised of damage to the delicate parts of the statue
Fears have been raised of damage to the delicate parts of the statue

Val Bott, a noted local historian and Chiswick resident who is the chairman of the William Hogarth Trust, said, “That looks awful, very crowded and disrespectful to the statue.

“The statue project was intended to provide a landmark for the High Road and to celebrate one of Chiswick's most famous residents. It also made use of the fine Victorian railings which had been removed from a site further along the road.

“The William Hogarth Trust would very unhappy indeed if the local authority had given the market the right to place stalls within the railed enclosure.”

Tracey Logan, a historian of Chiswick and local resident added, “If street markets are to benefit Chiswick they must not harm its reputation as a place brimming with illustrious heritage.

“So it is really depressing to see how thoughtlessly the stallholders appear to have treated our statue of the great artist William Hogarth and his dog. So far it doesn’t look as though they have tied their tent to his paint brushes, though that would be a concern for the future as this could damage or break them. But it does remind us that these markets must be well-managed in sympathy with Chiswick and the environs of its High Road, so they can contribute to Chiswick’s reputation as a pleasant place to visit and live, and not harm it.”

The matter was raised with Hounslow Council’s Licensing and Culture Departments and an assurance was given to Councillor Todd that the stalls would not return to this location.

We contacted the organisers of the Antique and Vintage Market but did not receive a response.

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September 16, 2021