Following the passing of our Honorary Member, Colin Dexter who was a stalwart of the Inspector Morse Society and friend to all, the Society wanted to commemorate his passing in a tangible way.
Hence the formation of the Colin Dexter Memorial Fund which has been set up with the initial intention of having a statue of the great man erected. We have had contact with Oxford City Council and identified a perfect setting for the statue in Summertown, Oxford close to where Colin worked at the Oxford Examining Board from 1966 until his retirement in 1988.
We have also identified a local sculptor, Alex Wenham (www.alexwenham.co.uk) who is an award-winning stone carver who was responsible for the pediment for Nautical Villa, New York among many prestigious projects.
The preliminary design would have a full size Colin Dexter (in the 1990s during his most prolific writing period) holding a semi-complete Times crossword. In the background is a bookcase in which will be found the titles of all his books. It is the intention to have the statue set out in a garden environment, and surrounded by black & white slabs forming a crossword, the clues to which will be engraved on one side of the plinth. It will, naturally, be a crossword reflecting the life of Colin Dexter with the answers engraved on the opposite side of the plinth. In this way it is hoped that people will come and sit a while beside the statue and try and solve the clues (which will range from easy to cryptic). It is also intended that the names of the main benefactors will also be inscribed on one of the remaining sides of the plinth.
The full cost of the statue is estimated to be £50,000 and so the public share subscription is for 50,000 one-pound shares. You may purchase as many, or as few shares as you wish – every contribution will be gratefully received. As shares are sold updates will be made to the web site, and all the benefactor names published. The Colin Dexter Memorial Fund is open to individuals and corporate members e.g. ITV, Pan Macmillan alike.
All subscribers (subject to there being room) will be invited to any unveiling which it is hoped will be towards the end of 2018/beginning of 2019.
However, please note that a statue is just one idea of how to commemorate Colin Dexter – others include a memorial bench and a scholarship fund for those studying classics (just as Colin did). Also any memorial will be subject to planning approval and naturally the wishes of Colin’s family. We do invite subscribers to let us know their views on different ways in which to commemorate Colin’s life.
Another Way To Support The Fund
Apart from buying shares in the fund you can also help by purchasing the new fan-based Endeavour Morse novel, Dead Man’s Walk by Antony James. For each copy sold £2 (two-shares) will be donated to the appeal. See www.baker-street-studios.com/shop/books/dead-mans-walk-an-oxford-murder-mystery-inspired-by-the-creations-of-colin-dexter/ for further details.
Finally thank you for your support – large or small – to this rather unique statue for a unique man.