London Borough of Barnet

Finchley, Friern Barnet and Totteridge

Finchley La Delivrance and other statues

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Finchley has two famous pieces of public art. La Delivrance is a 16-foot statue in bronze of a naked women holding a sword aloft, and is the work of the French sculptor Emile Guillaume.

It is at Henley's Corner, at the bottom of Regents Park Road. Because she has no clothes the statue has a number of local names including "Dirty Gertie", "The Wicked Woman", and most popular (to the exclusion of its real name) "The Naked Lady".

The statue was made to celebrate the French victory at the First Battle of the Marne when the German army was stopped from capturing Paris in August 1914. In 1920 it was bought by Lord Rothermere who presented it to Finchley.

Finchley Council needed a war memorial and intended placing the new statue at the main entrance of Finchley's recreation ground. Lord Rothermere insisted that the statue was to be placed so that he might see it in Victoria Park when driving to see his mother.

The statue was unveiled in October 1927, in front of a crowd, believed to have been around 8,000 people, by the then Prime Minister, Lloyd George It is considered to be one of the most interesting pieces of public art in England.

At East Finchley Station tube station, just before the bridge starts, there is a statue of an archer. It was sculpted by Eric Aumonier as a piece of decoration for the new East Finchley Station which was rebuilt when a new line was tunnelled from Archway.

It was unveiled in July 1940. Originally the statue was made from beech wood, with a lead skin. The statue is sometimes called Archie.