University worker fined after throwing eggs at Margaret Thatcher statue
Jeremy Webster was pictured and filmed throwing the eggs shortly after the memorial’s installation
A university worker has been fined £90 after throwing eggs at a statue of Margaret Thatcher.
Jeremy Webster, who is deputy director at the University of Leicester’s Attenborough Arts Centre, was pictured and filmed throwing the eggs shortly after the memorial’s installation in Ms Thatcher's home town of Grantham, Lincolnshire, on May 15.
The university said it “does not condone defacement” after the incident and said the matter was being addressed in line with its procedures.
Three eggs were thrown at the monument with a cry of “oi” heard after one hit its target.
Lincolnshire Police said they spoke with the 59-year-old and he was given a fixed penalty notice under Section 5 of the Public Order Act.
In a statement, the force said: “We have spoken with a 59-year-old man in relation to an incident involving eggs being thrown at a statue of former prime minister Margaret Thatcher on May 15.
“He has been given a £90 fixed penalty notice under Section 5 of the Public Order Act.
“The statue continues to be monitored by CCTV.”
The statue was lowered into place in the town amid previous threats of “egg throwing” and was booed by passing motorists.
In February 2019, a planning committee unanimously voted in favour of the £300,000 statue – which was originally intended for Parliament Square in Westminster.
Mr Webster was seen holding an egg carton in one hand and preparing to throw an egg from the other shortly after the statue’s installation.
Egg residue and a piece of shell could be seen on the statue’s lower half.
Police turned up at the scene within minutes of the incident.
Two CCTV cameras have been installed around the memorial to combat any threats of vandalism, the local council said.
Reports originally presented to South Kesteven District Council showed the statue was moved to the area due to fears of a “motivated far-left movement… who may be committed to public activism”.
After a large-scale £100,000 unveiling ceremony was approved by the council in 2020, a Facebook group proposing an “egg-throwing contest” at the event attracted interest from more than 13,000 people.
Before planning permission was given to the statue, the only marking of Baroness Thatcher in the town was a plaque on the corner of North Parade and Broad Street to show where she was born.