Missing New Years Penguin Recovered

Please leave the penguins alone! That’s the appeal made by Castletown, England resident Barbara Glassey, who the Penguin Post has learned had two gnome-like model penguins sitting in deckchairs on the gateposts of her Victoria Road home, that is until vandals struck on New Years Eve and removed one from its perch. Fortunately the penguin was recovered in next door’s garden, but it sustained some serious damage to the extent that it probably won’t be able to endure another such attack. ‘The same penguin was taken a number of years back and was later brought back by a policeman,’ said Barbara. ‘When it was re-sited it was part filled with something to make its removal more difficult, hence the damage.’ She added: ‘It could not take a third time, there is a crack in its back, it will shatter if it is done again.’ The permanent removal of one – or both – of the penguins would be a great loss to the street scene and they would be missed by children and adults alike. The penguins were purchased over the internet from a penguin store in America years ago. ‘When they arrived we needed Tom’s father Dennis to put them on the posts for us, which he was reluctant to do at first and made all sorts of suggestions as to where they could go in the garden,’ said Barbara. ‘He was too embarrassed to be seen doing it. Eventually he decided a quiet Sunday morning would be the best time. ‘He never would refuse us any request at the end of the day. He had almost finished cementing the last penguin on and feeling good that he’d got away with any ribbing from his friends, when someone on the other side of the road shouted: “I see they haven’t locked them all up Dennis!”’ The penguins complemented what grew to become a whole garden of nautical objects, shells and ornaments to reflect the maritime interest of Barbara’s husband Tom, a well-known character who was blind and died in 2009. People even send Christmas cards to the penguins, the cards are addressed to: The Penguin House in Castletown. ‘They mean so much to children and adults,’ said Barbara. ‘The whole thing is Tom. It’s Tom and my life and everybody else’s, any children love them. When teachers at Victoria Road School ask children where they want to go for nature walks they always want to see the penguins.’ She said: ‘The penguin will eventually be repaired and take its place on the gatepost again, but I’d like the revellers to leave the penguins sitting watching the world go by in their deck chairs by the roundabout. ‘If only as a memorial to Tom who got so much fun knowing he’d given someone a smile for the day and his father Dennis, who did so much for us.’

Barbara Glassey with the recovered penguin, which was removed from the gatepost of her house in Castletown


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