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When in Rome . . . ?

04 January 2012


From Mr Robert Medway

Sir, — For my Christmas present, my son took me to an evening football match to see Southampton play Hull. We met outside the ground in the main concourse, where there is a large bronze statue of Ted Bates, historically a great name in the annals of the South­ampton club, which started as a church team, “The Saints”.

As we waited, I noticed that, as the crowd surged around, many went and touched the foot of the statue as they passed. I went across to observe. Sure enough, the foot was highly polished and worn. It immediately reminded me of St Peter’s in Rome, where Roman Christians do the same at the huge statue of St Peter — an example of folk religion.

I was wondering if this is unique to Southampton FC, or if your readers know of similar examples up and down the country?

Hillbrow Farm, Pound Lane
Meonstoke, Hants SO32 3NP

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