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Thursday, 7 February, 2002, 08:40 GMT
Wax Hitler back in the open
Waxwork models of Winston Churchill and Adolf Hitler
Churchill and Hitler face to face again
A waxwork of Adolf Hitler has been brought out from behind a glass case to face the public for the first time in 60 years.

The Madame Tussaud's model was put behind glass in 1942 to protect it from attacks from members of the public.

The waxwork has been reinstated in the Grand Hall next to a model of Winston Churchill at the London tourist attraction.

The decision was taken to put it back in the open, despite visitors to the museum still regularly spitting at it.

We constantly had to wipe spit off the front of the glass case

Madame Tussaud's spokeswoman

The model was first placed in the Grand Hall in 1933 when Hitler became the German head of state.

It became a target for hate attacks ranging from spitting, egg-throwing and physical damage.

On one occasion it was daubed with paint and a label was hung around its neck, proclaiming Hitler a mass murderer.

It was put behind glass after workers found that someone had stabbed it with pins, leaving a series of pin-marks around its heart.

A spokeswoman for Madame Tussaud's said no other waxwork had ever attracted the level of hatred and abuse the Hitler model had endured.

Waxwork model of Adolf Hitler
Hitler back after 60 years

Diane Moon added: "Someone tried to push over Saddam Hussein during the Gulf War and there was an outcry when he was first unveiled, but no other waxwork has been attacked like Hitler.

"We constantly had to wipe spit off the front of the glass case."

The model was put in the Grand Hall on Wednesday and survived its first day intact, but faces the half-term holiday next week.

Strangely, the waxwork was one of the few figures which survived the German bombings in the Blitz.

In 1996 a worker reported that its hair appeared to be growing.

Emotional attraction

Ms Moon said the decision to move the waxwork next to the model of Churchill was part of a package of planned improvements.

"Madame Tussaud's is about much more than the people featured in the attraction, it's about the emotions that those people provoke," she said.

"The way people have reacted to Hitler in the past is an extreme example of that.

"At the time guests' passions were so inflamed that the damage inflicted made it impractical for us to leave the figure out in the open.

"Now it's time to remove the glass and place Hitler back in context - going head-to-head with the leader who stood fast against him against all the odds, Winston Churchill."

Click here to go to London
See also:

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Liam Gallagher 'more hated than Saddam'
06 Jan 00 | Entertainment
Evans 'hated' by waxworks visitors
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