Friday, May 13, 2016

Peter Pan quote to be replaced over inaccuracy fears

A quotation at the foot of a Peter Pan statue in Angus, Scotland, will be replaced after a "lack of certainty" over its origin. The quote, attributed to Peter Pan's Kirriemuir-born author JM Barrie, is etched in stone beneath a statue of the character in the town's square. However, an internet search by local historian David Orr revealed the quote may have come from a Disney movie. Angus Council will replace it with one "incontrovertibly traced" to Barrie.

The engraved quote reads: "Never say goodbye because goodbye means going away and going away means forgetting." Mr Orr said: "When I read it, I thought 'that's quite good, I've never heard of that'. So, I googled it to see the full quote and the first thing it took me to was the JM Barrie website and there was debate about it." One theory is that the quote is an amalgamation of lines from Steven Spielberg's 1991 film Hook.

Mr Orr consulted other Kirriemuir residents, including Sandra Affleck, an authority on the Peter Pan author. He said: "I'm no expert on Barrie by any means, but a lot of the local folk are, and they came back with the same answer. I thought, if Sandra hasn't heard of it, what are the chances?" Barrie, who was born in Kirriemuir in 1860, published the story of "the boy who wouldn't grow up" in a 1904 play and a 1911 novel.

Mr Orr said: "I suspect there has been someone doing more checking behind the scenes. They're trying to draw attention to the Peter Pan statue in the square and it's surrounded by this quote. It's an admirable line but if it's not actually from Peter Pan, it's a bit strange." A spokesman for Angus Council said: "We are grateful to one of our museum visitors for raising this with us. While this quotation has been widely attributed to the famous author there is a lack of absolute certainty over its origins. As such, we feel it is appropriate to replace it with one that can be incontrovertibly traced to the work of the great JM Barrie."

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