Victoria had price of place in the compound of the former British
Embassy in Bangkok. When the beautiful grounds and embassy buildings were sold in 2018 to the Central Group for the then record sum of 20 billion baht and subsequently demolished, the new owners of the property said the statue would become a major attraction and retail theme in the shopping mall planned for the site.
This outraged local Brits who pointed out that the huge statue, which is inscribed with the words “Erected in loving memory by Her subjects in Siam”, was paid for by the British community at the beginning of the last century and should not have been included in the sale of the embassy.
Despite valiant efforts by the British Club Bangkok to have the statue of Queen Victoria relocated within its grounds on Silom Road, their pleas have fallen on deaf ears.
Today, the statue has been relegated to a hopefully temporary location on the banks of a dirty klong that runs along Soi Somkid in central Bangkok. It’s a forlorn and thoroughly undignified sight for such a historically
important figure. But it’s not only Brits who are shocked and outraged - Thai people, with their deep respect for royalty, are also upset at the commercialization of the queen’s image.
The grounds of the British Club would be an ideal home for this iconic statue. Queen Victoria deserves a better place in Bangkok to reside than
a department store. Over to you, the Central Group.