A PETITIONER has formally requested the removal of a statue of Queen Victoria’s consort, Prince Albert, from Leinster House in Dublin.
The request was made to the Oireachtas Petitions Committee (OPC), who will make a decision tomorrow on whether to take down the historic sculpture.
A similar statue of Victoria was removed from Leinster House and gifted to Australia when Ireland became a Republic in 1949, after Britain declined an offer to take it.
Unveiled in 1908, the large 15-foot monument of the Queen who ruled Ireland during the Famine bears an inscription, reading: “Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Empress of India, erected by her Irish subjects”.
The petitioner seeking the removal of her husband’s statue from the seat of the Irish Parliament is doing so on the basis that it represents British rule over Ireland.
OPC chairman, Seán Sherlock, said today: “The statue of Prince Albert, Consort of Queen Victoria, has resided in its current location, on the Merrion side of Leinster House since 1923.
“The statue was the work of notable Irish sculptor John Henry Foley, his other famous works in Ireland include the statue of Daniel O’Connell on O’Connell Street and Edmund Burke outside Trinity College.
“Its partner statue, that of Queen Victoria herself, was gifted to the city of Sydney, Australia in 1987.”
On Wednesday, the OPC will also consider petitions on ending Ireland’s arms trade with Israel, bringing Irish hospitals up to European standards and reinstating the Early Childhood Care and Education Scheme exemption for children with special needs.