ALEX City Statue Proposal [download full brief]
Alex first appeared in Robert Maxwell’s short-lived London Daily News in 1987. Written by Russell Taylor and Charles Peattie and drawn by Charles Peattie it was originally conceived as a satire on the social phenomenon of the time – the Yuppie. Alex is an egotistical, insensitive, mercenary, BMW-driving, status-obsessed banker of the ilk that came to the fore in the materialistic 1980s. When the London Daily News folded after only five months the resourceful Alex quickly found himself a new home on the newly-launched (and now sadly demised) Independent. He remained there for four and a half years, refining his satirical bent on the City of London whose values had been sorely tested following the Crash of ’87.
In 1992 Alex, as befits his mercenary nature, got himself headhunted to the Daily Telegraph where his adventures continue to appear to this day. Over the years he has lived through and commented on several economic cycles, including various market crashes, Britain’s exit from the ERM in 1992, the Gulf War, the dotcom boom and bust, the subprime crisis of 2007/8 and of course today’s “new normal” of quantitative easing and negative interest rates. Over that time he has married Penny, had a son Christopher, become a townie weekender in the country, had several affairs and been through life experiences of varying surreality, including having a heart attack, being shot and being abducted by aliens.
The Alex cartoon will celebrate its 30th birthday in February 2017. The proposed statue would commemorate Alex’s relevance and importance to the City of London. Not only has he kept the “Big Bang” generation of bankers and brokers amused over their careers (and now increasingly in their retirement), but he has actively inspired younger people to work in the City (despite his authors’ best endeavours to the contrary), as well as providing a tongue-in-cheek insight into the financial world for readers who don’t work in that field.
The statue would be designed by Alex artist Charles Peattie and located in Broad Street Ward, the traditional ward for trading, the Stock Exchange, and even ‘Telegraph Street’.