A CIVIC leader has stepped in to clear up any confusion about the new sword in the stone monument at the gateway to Wareham.

It seems some people have been jumping to the wrong conclusion and confusing the replica blade, which stands on one of the town’s main roundabouts, with the stuff of Arthurian legend.

According to the popular myth only the true king can pull Excalibur from the stone, but the sword in Wareham’s case has nothing to do with the Knights of the Round Table.

Mayor Eric Osmond said: “We in Wareham don’t go in for myths and fairy tales about King Arthur and his Excalibur.

“The sword you can see is a replica of the remains of a sword discovered in 1927 when South Bridge was rebuilt.”

Cllr Osmond said the remains of what turned out to be a real Saxon sword were found deep in the river.

He added: “Obviously it had laid there for thousands of years. What you see on the roundabout is an exact replica of this Saxon sword.”

But it’s easy to see how the sculpture could be wrongly interpreted by others.

Earlier Andy Barker, from Kingston, said: “As a Cornishman, born in Tintagel, I was astounded to see an Excalibur stuck in a pile of rocks on the Wareham roundabout.

“As all Arthurian students will know, Excalibur was thrown into Dosemary Pool near Camelford by Sir Galahad and Lady Guinevere after Arthur was mortally wounded.

“Even Merlin, with all his trickery, could not have retrieved this and stuck it into a roundabout in Wareham.”

Cllr Osmond said the sculpture, which has been funded through sponsors – costing local taxpayers nothing – is part of an ongoing enhancement programme on the roundabout.

“There will be more enhancements on the roundabout,” he said.

“We wanted to make a big visual impact to attract people into Wareham so they come and support the local economy.”