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London's White Tower - missing the 'block'?

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I recently enjoyed a fab weekend in London and spent time at the historic White Tower, but was a little disappointed to see that the famous Tudor 'chopping block' and axe once sited outside on the original execution site... http://c8.alamy.com/comp/BA1PBB/execution-block-and-axe-on-display-in-the-white-tower-at-the-tower-BA1PBB.jpg


... had been moved to the inside of the Tower and replaced outside by a perspex ''pillow'' (possibly to represent that placed there once to catch a severed head?)



Fair enough, the block itself (said to be from Tudor times) was staged and sanitised for younger viewers, but surely symbolically displaying a perspex pillow is crass?


Is this another exercise in dumbing History down?

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I'm wondering if that pillow is meant to be funny- a nice romantic place to rest one's head?


There's so many things wrong with it, I'm not sure where to begin. Or it's cleaver on a level I can't comprehend.

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  • 2 months later...

This for those who are interested (from Claire at Visitor Services, the Tower)...


Thank you for your email.


We do realise that this is a very subjective area.


A new permanent memorial was unveiled at the Tower of London in 2006.


Brian Catling was awarded the commission in 2005 after five artists submitted proposals to interpret the execution site in a dignified and sympathetic way. Their ideas were judged by public consultation and a selection panel.


Designed by British artist Brian Catling, the circular memorial focuses on the ten executions that have taken place on Tower Green, within the Royal castle’s walls. It is intended to remember all those executed over the years at the Tower - providing a focal point for contemplation, reflection and remembrance.


The new memorial replaces a modest aluminium plaque and small plastic notice that listed the names of the people put to death there.


Comprising two engraved circles with a glass-sculpted pillow at its centre, the larger circle of dark stone bears a poem - written by the artist - around its rim, whilst the upper glass circle bears the engraved names of the ten famous and not so famous individuals executed in front of the Chapel Royal.


With kind regards


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