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New penguin on the block

When a much-loved penguin sculpture mysteriously disappeared from campus earlier this year it left a gaping hole at the heart of LSE.

Photograph of the penguin sculpture on Clare MarketBut the School has picked up a new penguin which was unveiled at the same spot this week.

School Secretary Adrian Hall said: "LSE wasn't the same without the penguin and so we're delighted with its replacement."

The original 60lb landmark, which had stood guard over Clare Market since 2005, became a source of international media attention after it was stolen from its plinth in a suspected alcohol-related incident. Two flippers were all that remained of the waist-high artwork, created by Toronto artist Yolanda vanderGaast.

University security and police searched for the missing penguin but to no avail.

As news of the disappearance spread flowers, poems and tins of sardines were left at the site, and vigils were held as students paid their respects.  A Facebook site was created in its honour and the tragic tale achieved coverage as far afield as Canada - home of philanthropist and LSE alumnus Louis Odette who donated the artwork to LSE.

However lessons have been learned and the School's new addition, also created by vanderGaast, has been secured to the ground even more firmly than its predecessor.

3 November 2009

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