There was no disagreement that the club’s Grange Loan HQ is deservedly recognised as a significant landmark and, alongside such lesser sites as the Glasgow Concert Hall and Lincoln Cathedral, would be an appropriate site for such decoration.
It is there that the agreement stopped. For it was suggested to the club that the painting to be projected might be Sir Henry Raeburn’s iconic masterpiece Fantasy Bob Skating on Duddingston Loch.
The discussion got off to a bad start when the Doughty Groundsman expressed the trenchant view that to compare the ground to Duddingston Loch failed to reflect his sterling work at mopping up after the wettest season in the club’s history. He was sure that the artistic experts could find suitable works depicting Stakhanovite figures driving tractors or pushing mowers which would be more in mood with the surroundings. The DG’s views were duly noted.
|A work to please the DG|
After several hours energetic discussion, the majority opinion was that the attribution to Raeburn, while controversial, remained sound. Above all there is no indication that M Danloux understood anything about cricket. While cricket is disappointingly not a major subject within Raeburn’s oeuvre, it was noted that his estate in Stockbridge once contained the land that is now Edinburgh Accies' ground and the Citlylets Grange home to Scotland and the Grange Club itself. This was compelling evidence in favour of Raeburn.
But there was more disagreement as to whether it is genuinely a picture of Fantasy Bob. Some present suggested that while FB’s propensity for skating on thin ice had often been witnessed, most particularly in his presentation of himself as an opening batsman for the All Star 4th XI, he had never been seen in such an elegant pose as displayed in the picture. Others were sceptical that FB had been around at the time the painting was made, although the club’s scorebooks failed to provide evidence one way or the other. A final clinching argument was made that the club did not need any more controversies around misattribution and FB. Close inspection of the scorebooks had seen many leg byes, byes and wides being erroneously attributed to him rather than the extras column.
The club therefore decided, with some sadness, to decline participation in the scheme.