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Isabelle Gerretsen has published 28 articles

Six-foot goddess statue disappears from Hugh's ball

A statue of Venus di Milo, standing at six feet tall, went missing from St Hugh's Odyssey ball earlier this term
Isabelle Gerretsen on Thursday 24th May 2012
Photograph: Facebook

A six-foot statue of Venus di Milo mysteriously disappeared from the St Hugh’s Ball on 12th May.

JCR President, Sara Polakova told Cherwell, “While the Ball was a roaring success, the morning after was tragic: both hired statues, one of Venus di Milo and the other of a generic Greek hero (which we fittingly nicknamed Dave) were reported missing. Dave was luckily retrieved later that day in one of the Hugh’s rooms, dressed in a gown, mortarboard and sunglasses, and clutching a Carlsberg. However, cheeky Venus was still missing. There was no success for days. No letter from Venus, no trace of her armless torso anywhere.”

After frantic email correspondence with the other JCR Presidents, Venus di Milo was found a few days later at St Anne’s College. Polakova said, “a misunderstanding I’m sure. We were assured she got plenty of sleep and was fed regularly, which was a relief to us all.”

The statue has now has been returned to the Committee, who are said to be greatly relieved as they were facing a £400 fine if the statue was not retrieved.

This money was supposed to be invested into either the JCR or the Oxford Burma Alliance, an organisation with which St Hugh’s is closely affiliated.

Lucy Garrett, Vice-President of the Ball Committee, commented, “We are of course glad to have the statue back as we are now able to put more money towards our charity, the Oxford Burma Foundation, rather than wasting it as the result of some guests’ stupidity.”

The true identity of Venus’ kidnappers remains unknown. Maryellen Larkin, a visiting student at St Anne’s, was completely unaware of the fact that the statue had been found at her college commenting, “I have no idea how someone could have smuggled it out but it was fairly crowded.”

Lucy Fielding, a guest at the ball, said, “I was very impressed with the organisation of the event and security was extremely tight, so I can’t imagine how someone managed to steal the statue.”

Toby Huelin, a music student, said, “It’s really rather impressive that something so large could have found its way down to St Anne’s; I feel proud to be a Stanner.”

Polakova also expressed her amazement at the feat adding, “Next time, I would advise against bringing a statue home from a night out; they might not talk much and are easy to keep, but they’re simply not something an average Oxford student can afford. With Venus di Milo in particular, you’re definitely punching above your weight.”

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