This statue stands behind the Bethesda Methodist Chapel in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. I think it is Mary and the Baby Jesus. But what do the words painted on the building mean.
Mercia is the old name for the English Midlands, Stoke-on-Trent is in the North Midlands. Rain God? When you drive towards Stoke-on-Trent you realise it is higher than the surrounding area and rain clouds travelling over the Cheshire plain do sometimes dump their rain here… And Laughter? Maybe that’s about the place, the character of the people, or perhaps the writer was imagining the damp, wet people who had been rained on and was laughing at them. Who knows?