Statues, monuments and buildings are not just a ghostly presence from the past in our public spaces. They have different meaning and significance in the present for different people.
Complex buildings, monuments and memorials that are focal sites of remembrance can become spaces in which entangled personal and national histories are contested. Such contestation indicates a desire for a participatory historical culture.
The monuments and statuary appear like bookmarks in the development of Britain’s national heritage and the ubiquitous blue plaques add to the notion of visiting a space once inhabited by the ‘great and the good’. They are intended to be sites of memory, the memorial heritage of a particular community.
Source; People and Their Pasts, Palgrave, 2008