Get us in your inbox

The Black Lives Matter statue that replaced a slave trader has already been taken down

Following a secret mission led by artist Marc Quinn, the figure of demonstrator Jen Reid had appeared at dawn yesterday

Huw Oliver
Written by
Huw Oliver

A month after the bronze statue of seventeenth-century slave trader Edward Colston was toppled into Bristol harbour, yesterday he was replaced – with a figure of one of the Black Lives Matter protesters who climbed on the plinth and raised her fist in celebration that day.

However, within little more than 24 hours, the resin-and-steel sculpture of Jen Reid had already been removed. At around 5.30am today, contractors were pictured hauling the statue into a skip hire lorry and driving away.

The resin-and-steel sculpture of Jen Reid appeared on the plinth just after 5am yesterday following a secret mission by a team of ten, led by artist Marc Quinn, who arrived in two lorries at dawn. On seeing the statue, Reid, a stylist, told The Guardian: ‘Being up there, with my fist raised – it was an amazing moment, and this captures it. It gives me goose pimples.’

View this post on Instagram

Bristol you rock! Up of went at 5am this morning. Go visit. #blacklivesmatter #bristol #colstonstatue

A post shared by Liam Steevenson MW (@liamsteevenson) on

The authorities have yet to announce plans for an official replacement for Colston, who was responsible for transporting at least 80,000 people from West Africa to the Caribbean. A spokesperson for the council today said the statue of Reid would be taken to a local museum for the artist to pick up or donate to its collection.

Here are all the ways you can support Black Lives Matter right now.

Latest news


    The best things in life are free.

    Get our free newsletter – it’s great.

    Loading animation
    Déjà vu! We already have this email. Try another?

    🙌 Awesome, you're subscribed!

    Thanks for subscribing! Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon!