9. FEARS HEIGHTENED THAT NELSON HAS TURNED HIS BACK ON TRAFALGAR TO BECOME A DISABILTY RIGHTS CAMPAIGNER

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In two startling new developments it has become apparent to the History Maintenance Commission that Horatio Nelson has deviated from the path history has carved out for him and chosen to throw his time and considerable clout behind the rights of the disabled community, no doubt prompted by our competition winner’s suggestion to attend a disability tribunal instead of The Battle of Trafalgar.

The first indication that history was on the change came when the owner of the original photographic plate of the picture below, showing The Old Carthusians football team of 1881, noticed that a pigeon had suddenly appeared where previously none had existed. The photograph was taken in Godalming, Surrey and the only inference that can be drawn from the feathered creature’s sudden appearance these many years later, unless it was trying to get pigeons associated with a successful football club, The Old Carthusians won the FA Cup that season, just as it seems all other birds bar pigeons are mascots of other clubs, is that Nelson’s Column, a short flight away in Trafalgar Square, no longer exists in 1881. Thus the many pigeons congregated there have had to find new places to dwell.

The Old Carthusians 1881. It was decided not to show the alarming new development in which a pigeon appears on the bench in the top right corner of the photo as it is an alarming indication that Admiral Nelson’s position in history is changing.

This troubling assumption was further backed by the unusual actions of one of our several thousand holograms of history’s great and notable people that we have in store here at the HMC in our Holgram Defense Program to send back in time to correct mistakes should they be made. As these are the very best and talented of humankind, on whom we can depend to put things right. Until such a time as they are required, hopefully never, we hire them out to open fetes or give lectures or performances. Giving something back to the community.

One such hologram is that of Edward Hodges Baily the sculptor who carved the statue of the great British maritime hero, Horatio Nelson that adorns the column at Trafalgar Square.

The hologram of Hodges-Baily, programmed to act like the nineteenth century artist, has been used mainly to offer advice and pep talks to students of the hammer and chisel as they seek to carve out a career rearranging marble or stone. It has also been creatively used to talk to those in despair threatening to jump from high places. The rationale behind this being that as Hodges-Baily managed to keep the statue of Nelson precariously placed upon the top of the 161 foot column for the best part of two hundred years, he could at least detain the prospective jumper in their lofty position long enough to allow emergency services to join the fray and talk the unfortunate soul down.

This has been the brief of the Edward Hodges-Baily hologram since its creation and there has been no deviation from this path until yesterday, when at a lecture on how he created the 18 foot sandstone statue conducted at the Yeovil School of Art, he suddenly introduced the fact that the idea to commemorate Nelson in Trafalgar Square fell through because it entailed placing an elevator adjacent to the column to allow disabled access as well as a wider plinth so he could place an 11 foot statue of a guide dog for the visually impaired at Horatio’s feet in keeping with the great man’s disability rights campaigns. However, the most worrying aspect of all this was that Bristol born Hodges Baily said all this in French!

We have taken immediate action in response to this potential change to the past as we know it. We have consulted the original Sibyl at Delphi using our ability to time travel and those consultations, once checked, will be made public and the threat to our present assessed and if considered to be of an alarming magnitude the History Maintenance Commission will do all within our power and resources to correct any anomaly and restore the past to that which we know and is acceptable.

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