Watch: Funeral walk planned to raise money for Bendigo statue

Campaigners calling for a statue to honour a bare knuckle boxer from Nottingham who won the English championship are retracing his funeral procession route to raise funding.

William Abednego Thompson, known as Bendigo, became a legend in the sport during the 19th century.

Born in a slum in Trinity Walk in Nottingham, off Trinity square, he fought 23 times and drew crowds of tens of thousands of people to his fights during his peak.

Often fighting for dozens of rounds during each bout, he became famous across the country for his strength and prowess in the ring.

After retiring he became an evangelist in an effort to abandon drunkenness and died aged 69 in Beeston.

His grave in St Mary’s Rest Garden, Sneinton, bears the statue of a lion and another of his likeness stands on Sneinton Hollows on top of what used to be the Hermitage pub, but is only made of stone and has often fallen into disrepair in the past.

Campaigners began calling for a permanent memorial 18 months ago and are now planning to walk the route of his funeral procession, from Beeston to Sneinton, on April 29.

Thousands of people lined the streets to see his coffin pass, and it’s hoped the recreation will attract donations towards a statue on Trinity Square.

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