Mother With Child / Seated Girl (Middlesbrough, Glynn Williams, 1984)

Status: Removed

Glynn Williams’ Mother With Child (shown above, also known as ‘Sitting, Holding, Looking‘) and Seated Girl were a set of two sculptures found on Linthorpe Road, Middlesbrough in the mid-80s and early-90s.

Provided by Tony Duggan

Made from Ancaster stone, the pieces were part of the redevelopment of the pedestrian area in 1984, along with Graham Ibbeson’s Gardener and Shopper & Child. Both statues came to Middlesbrough as part of the Urban Programme, which also saw the acquisition of Paul Neagu’s Starhead and – later – Graham Ibbeson’s other Middlesbrough work, Scales of Justice (both of which can still be found in the town).

Like the Ibbeson works, Williams’ statues seem to have been popular climbing spots (and somewhere to have a peaceful smoke too, as seen in the photo below).

Photograph by Paul Sturrock (licensed from Alamy)

Seated Girl (also referred to as ‘Sitting Still‘) was sited further down Linthorpe Road, outside what was then C&A (now Next). We’re still lacking decent photos of it, so if you have any please let us know.

Seated Girl (photo by Rene Porteous)

The mother and child motif was a common theme for Glynn Williams – he’s reworked and reproduced it several times during his working life, often in experimental cutaways or primitive forms.

Both Mother With Child and Seated Girl were removed in the mid-90s when the area was remodelled. We’re not 100% sure what happened to them afterwards, but they seem to have been donated to the Willows Care Home behind James Cook Hospital. Certainly Mother With Child appears on a Google Street View at the nearby Cavendish House. However, when Sue Martin from the invaluable Memories of Middlesbrough community went to check if it was still there, it had already disappeared. A later conversation with one of the care home staff suggested that the sculpture had been stolen during the night some years ago.

Mother & Child on Google Street View (accessed in 2020).

As ever, any information or photographs about either of these pieces is gratefully received.

Original Site of Mother & Child

Original Site of Seated Girl

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