Statue of Queen Elizabeth II in Nottingham ‘would be considered’ as restored effigy of Victoria unveiled

The newly refurbished statue of Queen Victoria in Nottingham
The newly refurbished statue of Queen Victoria in Nottingham
By Joe Locker, Local Democracy Reporter

A Nottingham councillor says a new city statue of Queen Elizabeth II could be considered in future as a newly refurbished one of Queen Victoria was unveiled on the banks of the River Trent.

The Grade II listed statue of Queen Victoria, which sits in the Embankment’s Memorial Gardens, was originally crafted by Albert Toft in 1905.

It was moved to the Victoria Embankment in 1953, having been situated in Old Market Square in the decades before.

Over the years the statue has been damaged by vandalism and become weathered, losing some fingers and a sceptre.

However as part of the £1.7m transformation of the Memorial Gardens, which is being funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the statue has been refurbished.

It was unveiled on Friday, October 14, just over a month after the death of Queen Elizabeth II at the age of 96.

Cllr Audra Wynter (Lab), the portfolio holder for parks, said: “This is a statue that I think people have deep regard for.”

Asked whether Queen Victoria could one day be joined by a statue of Queen Elizabeth II, who was Victoria’s paternal great-great-granddaughter, Cllr Wynter added: “That is down to the people of Nottingham and the city of Nottingham.

“I mean I think it is something that we would consider if it was appropriate, not just necessarily people from the Royal Family, it could be other relevant historical people who have made a significant difference to the city I think we could think about having statues for.

“People have been waiting for this for a long time.”

Following Queen Elizabeth II’s death several new statues have been planned across the country. One plan for a design in Trafalgar Square in London has already been backed by MPs.

The marble for the Nottingham Queen Victoria statue’s missing sceptre was sourced in Italy and carved by Newark-based stonemason Bonsers.

Jo Bonser, the company director, says a small team spent thousands of pounds and nine months of work on the statue. She said: “She has undergone extensive cleaning, steam cleaning, and then we have had a new sceptre made and carved, a new cross on the urn and re-pointing and re-bronzing.

“We are bringing her back to life. She was moved from the Market Square in Nottingham many years ago to the Embankment, she did have a fence around her and I think she had suffered with a little bit of vandalism, hence why the sceptre was missing, and so for us to have been asked to help restore her was amazing.

“It would be great [to have a Queen Elizabeth II], I don’t know about carving it, we would leave that to the real experts, but certainly it would be nice to have another statue here.”

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