Lewes FC Signs 18th Century Pirates for 2022/23 season
Lewes FC is proud to announce that it will provide a home this season to a statue called ‘Inexorable’ commemorating Anne Bonny and Mary Read – trailblazing female pirates largely erased from history.
Sculptor Amanda Cotton said, “‘Anne and Mary should live somewhere where they will be appreciated and celebrated. ‘Inexorable’ stands for the idea that you can live free and without constraint, and the piece should serve as a reminder that you can live authentically as yourself, exactly as Anne and Mary did. I’d love Anne and Mary to be as famous as their male counterparts and bring inspiration to all. For these reasons I’m delighted that for a season they will stay at The Dripping Pan in Lewes, watching the only fairly resourced professional women and men club footballers in the world play. It’s a match made in heaven.”
Back in the 18th Century both Anne and Mary had to dress as men to escape poverty in the UK and join a pirate ship, something barred to them as women. Eventually they fell in love with each other, capturing ships around Jamaica, and leaving a trail of looted treasure and ex-lovers behind them.
The 7 feet high statue is intended to represent each woman’s elemental personality – fire for passionate, impulsive Anne, and earth for practical, many-layered Mary. The two forms are different but forever connected. Together Earth and Fire are unstoppable: hence ‘Inexorable’. The piece of art demonstrates a partnership of two strong, independent rebellious women whom history has tried to ignore.
Initially designed to be in Devon, but rejected by a local council as ‘inappropriate’, Lewes FC was keen to house the statue at their home ground The Dripping Pan, where they are famous for being the only club in the world to split resources equally between women and men footballers. But this was only recently made possible by a grant from the Chalk Cliff Trust to cover transport and installation costs.
Lewes FC director Karen Dobres commented, ‘We’re honoured that Inexorable will overlook our pitch, standing proudly by our old flint wall in Mountfield Road. As pioneers of gender equality in football, known for our radical stance on smashing gender stereotypes, we hope our community will be inspired by this incredible work of art. We’re grateful to Amanda for so powerfully drawing attention to these women’s stories, and to the Chalk Cliff Trust for funding the transportation of Inexorable to the Pan. We think Anne and Mary will feel very much at home in the town of Lewes and people will be able to come and see the statue on match days and open days.”