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Alternative Jack of Newbury art placed in Northbrook Street

'Berksy' effigy draws attention to homelessness

John Herring

John Herring

john.herring@newburynews.co.uk

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01635 886633

Alternative Jack of Newbury art placed in Northbrook Street

A MYSTERY hooded figure drawing attention to the issue of homelessness in Newbury has appeared in the town centre.   

The bronze-sprayed effigy – dubbed Jack, of Newbury – has been placed there by someone calling themselves Berksy, seemingly in a nod to the world-renowned street artist Banksy.

The figure  has been placed close to where a proposed £39,000 statue of one of Newbury’s most famous sons, Jack O’Newbury, is due to be erected.

The 2.35m-tall bronze sculpture of John Winchcombe II, the renowned clothier credited with creating the first factory in England, is planned to be sited outside his former home at 25 Northbrook Street.

A campaign to raise £38,000 to fund it was launched last month.

But Berksy’s feature calls on people to support local homeless charities, stating: “The statues you erect should honour the least among you.”

The artist’s statement attached to the hooded figure says: “Jack O’Newbury sent local men to fight and die in foreign wars to maintain his social status.

“Jack, of Newbury, fought for his country. His social status has been sinking ever since.

“Jack O’Newbury made children work under looms so he’d get richer and closer to the King.

“Jack, of Newbury, lost touch with his kids as austerity made him poorer and closer to death.

“Jack O’Newbury condemned three men to be burnt at the stake for their religious beliefs.

“Jack, of Newbury, was fined for begging and imprisoned when he could not pay the fine.

“Jack O’Newbury owned several homes.

“Jack, of Newbury, has no home.”

The statement says that visitors and residents to Newbury can help homeless people in the town by donating “time, money or much-needed items to voluntary organisations that do vital work”. 

These include Loose Ends, Newbury Soup Kitchen and West Berkshire Homeless.

The statement also includes part of a sermon from St Basil of Caesarea, who was known for his care of the poor.

“The bread you hold back belongs to the hungry.

“The clothes you lock away belong to the naked.

“The money which you are hiding belongs to the needy.” 

The Jack of Newbury Sculpture Fund has raised £4,830 of the £39,721 needed for the project.

The sculpture, by Luke Webb, will depict Jack holding a yard of cloth on his right arm while raising his left hand as if to capture the moment he conceived the idea to mechanise the process of cloth production.

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Article comments

  • NewburyJohn

    NewburyJohn

    09/10/2018 - 09:09

    HOMELESS ARE PEDOS

    Reply

  • Scoop

    08/10/2018 - 10:10

    So, 'Ajwatson' says: "Newburys (sic) homeless are mostly drug addicts, sex offenders or alcohol abusers and some choose to be homeless despite help being offered. Yes I said mostly and yes I stand by this and no I'm not going to divulge how I know this to be true." Imagine if this website wrote stories and the only evidence offered was 'I'm not going to divulge how I know this to be true'. Presenting 'facts' without evidence is called opinion and while entitled to comment, equally, those of us who read it are entitled to dismiss it.

    Reply

  • Scoop

    08/10/2018 - 10:10

    So, 'Ajwatson' says: "Newburys (sic) homeless are mostly drug addicts, sex offenders or alcohol abusers and some choose to be homeless despite help being offered. Yes I said mostly and yes I stand by this and no I'm not going to divulge how I know this to be true." Imagine if this website wrote stories and the only evidence offered was 'I'm not going to divulge how I know this to be true'. Presenting 'facts' without evidence is called opinion and while entitled to comment, equally, those of us who read it are entitled to dismiss it.

    Reply

  • Ajwatson

    05/10/2018 - 12:12

    Newburys homeless are mostly drug addicts, sex offenders or alcohol abusers and some choose to be homeless despite help being offered. Yes I said mostly and yes I stand by this and no I'm not going to divulge how I know this to be true.

    Reply

    • Newbury1234

      05/10/2018 - 12:12

      Do you know this as a fact?! I have worked with the homeless of Newbury and this is simply untrue! A few may have alcohol problems, but wouldn't you if you had no home and lived on the streets? Stop being so judgemental.

      Reply

      • Ajwatson

        05/10/2018 - 15:03

        Yes. Yes I do. As have I and they are. I have no pity for them. They make their own destiny. Why should hard working people devote any time or money to these people who choose to take drugs and abuse alcohol. They are adults and have plenty of options available to them. They are on the streets because of the bad choices they have made and crimes they have committed.

        Reply

        • Newbury1234

          09/10/2018 - 14:02

          And that doesn't make them any less of a person that has a home, or a job etc.

          Reply

        • Strafin

          05/10/2018 - 18:06

          That's such a Newbury response, instantly scared to death that you might have to help someone!

          Reply

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