Stoker family to pay for Bram statue in city centre
THE great-grand nephew of 'Dracula' creator Bram Stoker has revealed how his family wants to pay for a statue to commemorate the famous writer in the city in which he was born.
Dacre Stoker was in Dublin yesterday to mark the handing over of a painting of the writer by artist Aidan Hickey.
The handover took place in the Irish Writers' Centre in Parnell Square to mark the centenary of the writer's death.
Originally from Montreal but now living in South Carolina, Mr Stoker (53) said he was honoured to be a relative of the famous Irish literary figure.
"I only got a ribbing from friends around Hallowe'en who'd ask being related to Bram Stoker: 'Do you want candy or are you going to drink my blood?'"
His relative revealed that the Stoker family have been at loggerheads with Dublin City Council as to the location of the statue. However, the family now hopes the likeness will be situated in the city centre.
Mr Stoker, whose great-grandfather was Bram Stoker's younger brother, has supported plans for a memorial since he first visited Dublin in 2009.
"You have statues to all your other famous Dublin authors so the first question I asked was, "where is the Bram Stoker statue?'" Mr Stoker told the Irish Independent.
He said his family had turned down an offer from the council for a Bram Stoker statue in the park at Marino Crescent, opposite where Bram Stoker was born in 1847.
"Marino would seem like a good site but we felt that it was not an easy place for tourists to visit," said Mr Stoker who added that his family was prepared to pay the €23,000 cost of the statue.
However, the Stoker family said it was excited by an offer from Dublin restaurateur Brendan Flynn, who owns The Church restaurant and bar on Mary Street, to accommodate the Stoker statue outside his premises.
"It's downtown where tourists pass every single day and accessible to everybody," said Mr Stoker.
The former schoolteacher turned writer added he was delighted with the "powerful painting" by Mr Hickey.
"What I love about it is the look Aidan has captured in Bram's eyes. It's the Stoker look which is a family trait," he said.
When contacted by the Irish Independent, a spokesman for Dublin City Council said it had not received an application for planning permission for a Bram Stoker statue from Mr Flynn.