|Elaine Maynard Falkiner, née Farmer (1871-1900)|
Elaine Maynard Falkiner, née Farmer (1871-1900)
This is the Society's most ambitious project to date.
Elaine Falkiner was the first wife of Sir Leslie Edmond Percy Riggs Falkiner (1866-1917). She died in London on 28 December 1900 of enteric fever, was subsequently buried in plot 4 of Brookwood Cemetery, and was commemorated by a fine statue.
In May 1995, the statue was forcibly pushed off its pedestal (see photo on the left). The rose and and fingers of the left hand and forearm were damaged, whilst the edges of the plinth were slightly chipped. The incident was reported to the local police and to the Cemetery Office.
Unfortunately it took the Society some time to locate a suitable craftsman who was capable of restoring and repairing the damaged statue. However, about a year later we were able to commission Mr. Peter Sleath of Welling, Kent, to undertake this work. He visited the site to make an initial assessment of the work required. In early October 1996 he began the three-day task to repair the damage.
Two scaffold towers were erected which together supported an iron girder (see photo on the right). This beam took the weight of the statue, allowing it to be lifted back onto its pedestal using conventional block and tackle. Peter Sleath secured the statue to its base before moving on to repair the damage.
The fingers, hand and forearm of the statue were made good with resin and fragments of the original stone (see photo below). Lastly, the two large inscription panels, one for Elaine, and one for her mother (Anna Maria de Lorentz Farmer, who died in 1927), were also cleaned.
The Society is indebted to Peter Sleath for accomplishing this work so successfully, and for restoring this fine statue to its former glory. Some other work was undertaken by volunteers from the Society. This involved pruning some of the overhanging vegetation near the statue, and removing topsoil from around the base. The latter work unexpectedly revealed a third level to the pedestal, and that the ashes of Elaine's brother, Henry H. Farmer, had been placed in the plot after his death in October 1944.
|The base of the statue in May 1995|
|The scaffold towers in place, October 1996||Careful work restoring the damaged forearm|
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