Eighteen months ago, a mysterious Harry Potter-themed plaque showed up at the base of a sculpture outside the Bristol Children's Hospital in Bristol, England. No one, including hospital staff, knew who had put the Potter plaque there, and people have been puzzled by its sudden appearance for nearly two years. It has finally been revealed that the mysterious plaque-maker was actually a Harry Potter fan, dying of cancer, who wanted to leave something special for the sick kids at the hospital before he passed away.
The Potter plaque, which reads "Dedicated to the children of Bristol, the 1998 Quidditch World Cup posts, enchanted by Adou Sosseh. Have a magical day!," was put there by Bristol University graduate Cormac Seachoy. Cormac succumbed to cancer last year, but before he did, he wanted to leave something magical for the kids at the Children's Hospital, so he came up with the idea of the Harry Potter-themed plaque.He crowdfunded the money for the Potter plaque, and at the end of November 2014, he and a friend, James Carberry, snuck to the hospital in the middle of the night to affix it to a statue on hospital grounds that Carberry said had always reminded Cormac of Quidditch posts -- the fictional sport in the Harry Potter novels.
"He always used to say how the sculpture looked like the Quidditch posts. He wanted the children at the hospital to think they were a gift from wizards."The statue, called Lollypop-Be-Bop, is an interactive structure with colored lights that children in the hospital can turn on and off via a remote control. According to the Potter plaque, the rings of the statue are the posts from the 1998 Quidditch World Cup match between Senegal and Malawi that have been enchanted by Adou Sosseh, the captain of Senegal's team -- a tidbit of Harry Potter trivia that only true Potter fans would know, as it was only ever mentioned on J.K. Rowling's Pottermore website. Carberry recounted the story of the night he and Cormac put the Harry Potter-themed plaque on the statue to BBC, and about how they had forgotten a pair of scissors to open the tube of adhesive they had brought.
"We met outside the hospital and he came with this beautiful bronze plaque and a tube of industrial strength adhesive. He sent me to a pub around to ask for scissors, pretending we were opening a pop-up shop around the corner. I'll never forget the look on the barman's face as I asked him for the scissors, but he reluctantly agreed and we were able to put the plaque up."For their part, the hospital is quite fond of the Harry Potter-themed plaque and has been as enthralled by the mystery of it as everyone else. Now that they know that the plaque was put there by a diehard Harry Potter fan, and cancer patient, who just wanted to add a little magic to the lives of the children in the hospital, they have stated that they will keep the plaque where it is.
Carberry is pleased that the hospital has decided to keep his late friend's last gift, and that sick children will get to see a little bit of Harry Potter magic every time they look out at the statue, reports the Telegraph.
"It would really put a smile on his face to think that people are now talking about the plaque and that the hospital's decided to keep it. He just wanted to do something that would make people smile on their way in and out of the hospital."J.K. Rowling, and Harry Potter, would approve.
[Image via Jongleur100/Wikimedia Commons]