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Star Wars AT-ST replica owner being forced to remove the enormous roadside attraction

Contributed by
Nov 20, 2018

It would appear that the wounds suffered during the Battle of Endor in Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi are still rather fresh for some people. Though everyone may like the look of the classic AT-ST Walker (All-Terrain Scout Transport) from that film, it is still a bitter reminder of the evils that the Galactic Empire inflicted upon the galaxy. Even replicas of the chicken-legged vehicle (first seen in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back) aren't being tolerated anymore.

According to the BBC, Paul Parker installed a 14-foot-tall replica of the walker and placed it by the roadside in Devon, England. The Teignbridge Council has given Parker 21 days to remove it. We surmise that if he doesn't comply within 21 days, Ewoks will swarm the model and hit it with rocks and logs until it is destroyed.

Parker's new hope was that the walker would become a tourist attraction for the area, saying that he "wanted to try and raise awareness for Ashburton," a small town in Devon. The council will not be appeased — after 21 days they will send an "official enforcement letter," which is more decisive action than the Jedi Council ever took. They might skip the Ewoks altogether and just send in the Clones... isn't it rich?

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This AT-ST replica is fully powered down...at least we hope it is. (Credit: BBC)

The replica was originally built by Dean Harvey, who crafted it four years ago for his daughters. It took him 400 (well-spent) hours to make, but eventually his daughters grew up, as daughters are wont to do. He gave it to Parker after his daughters officially reached the age where they no longer wanted to play on a 14-foot AT-ST. Kids these days!

Parker owns the field where the AT-ST resides, and claims that it is "harmless." Other attempts by him to raise the profile of the town in the past have included a naked calendar, and we're assuming that AT-ST Walkers (and the Galactic Empire) were not involved in that venture.

As Parker says, "I can understand it, I haven't got planning permission, so I have got to put a retrospective planning application in for it." Let this be a lesson to all of you would-be AT-ST builders — always get permission first. Parker continues, saying, "Ninety-nine per cent of the comments have been positive, but obviously you have people that don't like it — you can't please everybody all the time."

He continues to have even newer hopes that the council will allow the walker to remain. He denies that it is a distraction for drivers, despite its proximity to the road. He mentions that both Stonehenge and The Wickerman are also by the sides of their respective roads, and he asks if they are also distractions. We're not sure on that one — Stonehenge has never blown Ewoks to pieces before our very eyes, so it's tough to say for certain.

Parker's intentions are noble, but he may want to be careful that he doesn't choke on his aspirations. We will keep you updated as this story of AT-STs and the people who love them develops.


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