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Joint statement about Thomas Guy and Robert Clayton statues


Posted on Thursday 11 June 2020
2612_St Thomas_ exterior from street-2 website

St Thomas' Hospital

Statement from Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity, and King’s College London

Like many organisations in Britain, we know that we have a duty to address the legacy of colonialism, racism and slavery in our work. We absolutely recognise the public hurt and anger that is generated by the symbolism of public statues of historical figures associated with the slave trade in some way.

We have therefore decided to remove statues of Robert Clayton and Thomas Guy from public view, and we look forward to engaging with and receiving guidance from the Mayor of London’s Commission on each.

We see the pervasive and harmful effects of structural racism every day through our work. Black people have worse health outcomes, and this inequality is one of many ways racism permeates our society. We are fully committed to tackling racism, discrimination and inequality, and we stand in solidarity with our patients, students, colleagues and communities.

Background

  • There are no plans to change the name of the hospital.
  • The statue of Thomas Guy, adjacent to the Science Gallery on the King’s College London campus, and the statue of Robert Clayton at St Thomas’ Hospital are part of the arts and heritage collection owned by Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity.
  • While we intend to organise removal as soon as possible it is likely the whole process will take a few weeks due to the size, age and listed status of the statues. 

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