Duke of Northumberland unveils Harry Hotspur statue

THE Duke of Northumberland has unveiled a statue to one of his ancestors in their home town.

THE Duke of Northumberland has unveiled a statue to one of his ancestors in their home town.

The 14-foot bronze statue of Sir Henry Percy, also known as Harry Hotspur, was unveiled by the Duke at a memorial garden at Pottergate in Alnwick at a ceremony last night.

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The statue is one and a half times lifesize and the Duke’s son, Earl George, posed as the model when its face was sculpted.

It was commissioned by Alnwick Community Development Trust, which raised the £59,000 required with financial support from the Duke.

The idea came following a suggestion from then trust chairman, county and town councillor Gordon Castle in January 2008, following which he headed up a committee of local organisations formed to take the project forward.

The statue was produced by well-known Northumberland sculptor Keith Maddison, with help from Black Isle Bronze in Nairn. It was transported from Scotland on Wednesday and installed on Thursday.

The statue was originally intended for completion to mark the 700th anniversary of the Percy family coming to Alnwick last year.

Trust manager Geoff Watson said: “The original timescale for the project was 18 months but it soon became clear that in order to ensure the statue was correct in every detail the timescale would have to be extended. I know that Keith has done a huge amount of research to ensure that every element of the work is historically accurate.”

Yesterday’s unveiling was attended by representatives from a host of town organisations and was followed by a VIP reception in the Great Hall at Alnwick Castle.

It came after an afternoon of entertainment on Pottergate which included music and demonstrations of medieval weaponry and fighting by the Hotspur School of Defence.

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