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Statue of Queen and corgis unveiled in Oakham





A large crowd gathered to witness the unveiling of a new statue of Queen Elizabeth II.

And as the cover was pulled down to reveal the almost life-size bronze figure outside Oakham Library, delighted applause greeted the late monarch’s familiar features.

The statue, which stands on a plinth flanked by three bronze corgis, was the first of the Queen to be commissioned following her death in September 2022.

It was unveiled at 2pm today (Sunday, April 21) on what would have been the Queen’s 98th birthday.

Two children - five-year-old Molly Banham and nine-year-old Freddie Newsham - had the honour of unveiling a bronze corgi each thanks to their winning entries in a corgi-themed art competition.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony, MP Alicia Kearns (Con) said: “This is a magnificent tribute and serves as a reminder of her late majesty’s grace, her wisdom and her unwavering commitment to her kingdom and to every county. Even this, her smallest one.

“As we stand before this monument I hope we can reflect on her legacy. A legacy of compassion, strength and of leadership. She guided us through challenges and celebrated with us in times of joy.

“And her memory lives on, not just this statue but in our hearts and in the very fabric of our society.”

Mrs Kearns unveiled the statue of the Queen with The Lord Lieutenant of Rutland Dr Sarah Furness, and Bishop of Peterborough Debbie Sellin.

Oakham School pupils played the national anthem towards the end of the ceremony.

A lone bagpiper played Sleep, Dearie, Sleep as a lament to the late queen, and later led a parade involving nearly 50 dogs from the Welsh Corgi League over to Oakham Castle, where a ‘meet the corgis’ event took place in the grounds.

A discreet police presence throughout pointed to the importance of the occasion, and that the project has attracted a few vocal critics. The ceremony passed without incident.

The statue, which is the work of Hywell Pratley, a member of the Royal Society of Sculptors and Society of Portrait Sculptors, has a Clipsham stone plinth beneath it that reads ‘This memorial statue of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth ll (1952- 2022) was erected as a tribute, through public subscription by the people of Rutland, for future generations’.

Donors of £5,000 or more to the project, which has cost about £125,000, could choose to be named on flagstones at the foot of the plinth.

Archie the corgi has a word in a pal's ear
Archie the corgi has a word in a pal's ear
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Archie the corgi
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Archie the corgi
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crwods attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crwods attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sculptor Hywel Prately with art competition winners
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sculptor Hywel Prately with art competition winners
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crwods attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crwods attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sculptor Hywel Prately
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sculptor Hywel Prately
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Corgis attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Corgis attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sarah Furness
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sarah Furness
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Unveiling of the corgis by local school children who won the art competition
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Archie the corgi
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Archie the corgi
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. sculptor Hywel Prately
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. sculptor Hywel Prately
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham.
Hundreds of people turned up to watch the ceremony
Hundreds of people turned up to watch the ceremony
The Lord Lieutenant of Rutland's RAF Cadet Sgt William Dean stands to attention as the bagpiper plays
The Lord Lieutenant of Rutland's RAF Cadet Sgt William Dean stands to attention as the bagpiper plays
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. High tea in the street - Pippy Woodley and Grenville Crawford, Castellan of Castle Bytham
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. High tea in the street - Pippy Woodley and Grenville Crawford, Castellan of Castle Bytham
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sarah Furness with Bishop of Peterborough Rt Revd Debbie Sellin
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Sarah Furness with Bishop of Peterborough Rt Revd Debbie Sellin
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. The corgis attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. The corgis attending
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Guests at the event
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Guests at the event
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Unveiling of Elizabeth II statue at Oakham. Crowd shot
Members of the public took photos of the statue
Members of the public took photos of the statue
Oakham School pupils Eddie Nicholson, Grace Hornsby, Wilfie Price, Monty Price, Iona Simpson, Joshua Davis, Fergus Simpson, Will Fearn and Archie Foster
Oakham School pupils Eddie Nicholson, Grace Hornsby, Wilfie Price, Monty Price, Iona Simpson, Joshua Davis, Fergus Simpson, Will Fearn and Archie Foster
The Lord Lieutenant of Rutland's cadets, Ellie Moore for the police and Sgt William Dean for the RAF
The Lord Lieutenant of Rutland's cadets, Ellie Moore for the police and Sgt William Dean for the RAF
The start of the Welsh corgi parade
The start of the Welsh corgi parade
The start of the Welsh corgi parade
The start of the Welsh corgi parade
Crowds turned up to watch the unveiling of the statue, which is Rutland's first public statue
Crowds turned up to watch the unveiling of the statue, which is Rutland's first public statue
A Welsh corgi, which was among those involved in a parade
A Welsh corgi, which was among those involved in a parade

Photos are available to buy from photos.iliffemedia.co.uk

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