Did Uri cause mayor’s regalia failure ? – Daily Express – December 13, 2000

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Did Uri cause mayor’s regalia failure?
BY DAVID SMITH

JewishTelegraph 50th anniversary dinner in Manchester. Uri Geller and Lord Mayor of Liverpool Cllr Eddie Clein Picture: Barrie Cowan, JewishTelegraph
JewishTelegraph 50th anniversary dinner in Manchester. Uri Geller and Lord Mayor of Liverpool Cllr Eddie Clein Picture: Barrie Cowan, JewishTelegraph

INSURERS are to be told they must pay repair costs for a diamondstudded gold chain worth £500,000 – apparently broken by the “mystical” powers of Uri Geller.

The spoon-bender was at a dinner conducting an unrelated psychic experiment when the Liverpool Lord Mayor’s chain of office fell apart.

Mayor Eddie Clein, who did not previously believe in Geller’s gift, then did a round of light-hearted interviews saying he was astounded by Geller’s powers.

But after the feast comes the reckoning. Fixing the chunky gold chain and its £200,000 centrepiece, the Evening Jewel – a Liverpool coat of arms surrounded by 365 diamonds and encased in solid gold – could cost hundreds of pounds.

Having assured Geller he won’t be asked to foot the jeweller’s bill, Liverpool City Council is likely to fall back on its insurer Royal & Sun Alliance, hoping the all-risk policy which covers the regalia extends to paranormal mischief.

Geller last night provided at least one reason why he should not be held directly responsible. “His chain looked extremely beautiful and expensive, sparkling with diamonds,” he said. “Almost as a semi-joke I told the mayor to keep away or it would bend.

“By saying that I planted the idea and it must have fixed in his mind. During dinner it was as if he thought of it subliminally and that triggered the back of the medal to bend completely out of shape. It was him rather than me.”

Geller explained: “For years I thought I was personally responsible for this kind of phenomena, but I was wrong. Experiments have shown all I am is a catalyst for releasing the kinetic energy in receptive people such as the mayor.”

Quite how the council will put that into an insurance claim remains to be seen. A spokeswoman admitted: “We have an all-risk policy covering the council’s high value items, but we don’t know what form a claim may take if we do decide to make one.”

A Sun Alliance spokeswoman said: “If the council maintains it was down to Uri Geller’s psychic powers, Sun Alliance would have to deal with that claim because the policy does not exclude psychic phenomena.”

Sun Alliance may hear Mr Clein’s own account of the dinner, held at Manchester’s Victoria and Albert Hotel to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Jewish Telegraph, for which Geller is a columnist.

Mr Clein said: “A mutual friend introduced me to Uri Geller before the meal and I saw his face transfixed on the Evening Jewel as he approached me,” he said.

“It is a beautiful piece of jewellery and I am used to people staring so I held it out and said ‘Here, you can touch it if you want’. He looked worried and immediately said ‘No, please don’t ask me to touch that jewel. I do not want to touch it.’

“We carried on chatting but I noticed he was still staring so I held it out again but he insisted he should not touch it. During dinner we were not sitting next to each other but I spotted him staring at the chain from across the room.

“I reached down to feel the jewel and the gold casing was loose. The whole thing practically fell apart in my hands. I was astounded.”

The 19th-century casing is held together by six gold rivets – all of which had come loose. Despite the hefty repair bill, Mr Clein insisted he would not be blaming Geller.

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