The cast bronze statue of the Annunciation was sculpted by Seán Crampton in 1995 in his workshop at Rookery Farm, Calne, whilst he was a parishioner here at Saint Edmund’s.
The sculpture captures the moment of the Annunciation when Mary responds to the invitation of the Word of God. In common with Seán’s “Silent Musicians” series of statues the Archangel Gabriel is shown in that moment of silence, pausing to hear Mary’s response, before sounding his trumpet to signal Mary’s acceptance.
Mary is shown, arms aloft, sitting on a bench which serves to signify a bridge between heaven and earth. This significance is further alluded to in the rail at the back of the bench or bridge which is the form of a Torii or Japanese gate found at the entrance to Shinto shines, marking the transition from the profane to the sacred.
In 1999 the year of Seán’s death, the then Parish Priest, Father Michael Robertson invited the parish to consider ways of marking the forthcoming millennium in the year 2000. In addition to the signing of the parish “Covenant with the Poor” it was agreed that this bronze statue of the Annunciation should be purchased for the church.
The statue was installed and blessed at a special parish vigil on the eve of the Feast of the Annunciation on 24th March 2000. It had always been Seán’s wish that his Stations of the Cross should start with an Annunciation and end with a Resurrection.
Positioned as it is on the ambo where the Word of God is proclaimed, the statue not only serves as a starting point to the Stations of the Cross but also, depicting the moment of an annunciation met by an acceptance, aptly signifies the response of the people of God to His proclaimed Word in the liturgy.