Karl Marx kidnapped from Ventnor car park

Vandals have damaged the brilliant mosaic in Ventnor’s central car park and stolen the tile of Karl Marx, which has been lovingly made by volunteers.

Karl Marx mosaic

Ventnor town councillor, Ken Knapman, has been in touch to report that someone has vandalised the fantastic “Ventnor Past and Present” mosaic display in Ventnor’s central car park and stolen the Karl Marx tile.

The mosaic display was created back in 2009 by a local mosaic group, led by Helen Goodman.

After some vandalism in 2011, the mosaics repaired and sat proudly in Ventnor car park, welcoming visitors and residents.

Click on images to see larger versions
Past and Present mosaic in Ventnor Car Park
Gap reveals missing tile

If you saw anything or know the whereabouts of the missing Karl Marx tile, please get in touch and let us know and we’ll pass the details onto Ken.

Alternatively you can always pop into the Community Cafe on Friday mornings to see the group working.

The main photo above was taken by one of the mosaic artists, 90 year old Jack Reed.

Thursday, 19th March, 2015 8:08am


ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2cUa

Filed under: Community, Top story, Ventnor

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

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20 Comments on "Karl Marx kidnapped from Ventnor car park"

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What drives people to do this kind of thing?

I expect the youth will be blamed, but wouldn’t they have just vandalised it rather than steal one of the tiles?

Ventnor never used to be like this. I remember when we could leave the door ajar on Tusdays and Fridays for the Ventnor Laundry man to collect and deliver. We didn’t have thieves and vandals in Ventnor then. I remember when we didn’t have druggies in Ventnor either and when the milkman could leave milk and other groceries on the step. Now you have to check your… Read more »

That’s not the Ventnor I live in.

With respect, Ventnor WAS the smuggling capital of the country, see the smugglers museum for the proof, a proud boast that ignores the murder and mayhem that goes hand in hand with the trade. There were a number of well known Drunks and trouble makers who are now spoken about in a light hearted manner. Youths did the same silliness that goes on today, but with perhaps… Read more »
barbara green

I also remember in the 70s you could leave your door unlocked and there was no vandalism at all in fact the local youths were very respectful bring back the 70s

Mike Vallender

This is not good nuisance for it shows a lack of value to the work and contribution the community has made to adding artistic and cultural value to Ventnor.

The picture provides interest and opportunities to experience something that might be a small part of the islands heritage and history as does many of the artistic additions that can be found throughout Ventnor.

With respect Davimel the smuggling families did not deprive the locals. They were good God fearing people who knew the Ten Commandments. They deprived the taxman. They kept the Rector on their side because he understood how poor many of his congregants were. Some became alcoholics, that is the nature of brandy and whisky. But these self same smugglers also risked their lives saving folk whose ships… Read more »
Robin Ford
davimel is right and I remember (to my shame)n when ‘Britannia’ lived in her boatshed below La Falaise that as 10 year olds we copied other children in throwing pebbles on her roof and calling her names when she yelled out. I’m in my 70’s and really regret this but old times weren’t also good times. That said the vandalism in the Central car park is scandalous.… Read more »
Ken Knapman
Thanks Sally, for publishing this article. As ever you are supportive to the Community cafe. We have to say, this activity is very rare. The last time it happened a set were found in Wheelers’ Bay and brought back to us undamaged. The creators, “The Ventnor School of Mosaic”, have done the majority of mosaics in Ventnor and we repair and maintain them voluntarily. We can turn… Read more »

I remember in those times in our village on the mainland, the local copper who lived in the community (remember them?) would know who the culprits were and give them a clip around the ear that dissuaded them from future anti-social activities. Times have changed, not necessarily for the better.

Rod Manley

Mosaic Town.

Friends of mine visit Ventnor and say,”That’s the town that has the mosaics isn’t it? They have seen the ones at the Botanical Gardens too. I must say,they are all brilliant and are a feature of the town. It’s a wonder that more people do not know about them.

Good luck, I hope Karl Marx comes back.


I remember that too Cicero. That was the 50s (Dixon of Dock Green and Call the Midwife tiime). And Robin I reckon you could have a point, but I’m trying to work out if they are Socialist or Conservative? I’m finding it difficult to imagine either. I think all our election candidates care about the Island. (Is there a monster raving lunatic standing?)


This just makes me so Sad. What is the point???
Just put it back whoever you are………….


Anyone asked Cafe UKIP over the road to see what they know?

Mike Vallender


Please pass on the thanks of island people and visitors alike for the pleasure your team gives to many people when this work is seen at Ventnor, Bonchurch and similar.


Thanks,Mike,I will.


This was done for the benefit of the town and people took time over it.So let’s hope it is returned.


Oh What a shame, I love those Ventnor History Mosaics in the car park, particularly Karl Marx.

mary melsom

Where else but in a Ventnor carpark would there be a homemade mosaic tile of Karl Marx! Hope they get it back as it adds to the lovely weird and wonderful arty Ventnor vibe!


Breaking news

After extensive searching and interviewing key informants the isle of wight police can say that the theft of the Karl Marx mosaic was a premeditated act.

It was in fact (wait for it) …….. a communist plot.