Work on new smuggler statue is now complete

Smugglers statue
Smugglers statue

Work on Scarborough’s latest statue has been completed and its installation is expected to take place within the next few weeks.

The sculpture, by north east artist Ray Lonsdale, depicts a smuggler and his apprentice and will be placed in Merchants Row.

Brian Bennett, Scarborough Council’s head of tourism, said money to fund the statue’s plinth was available but the installation would have to be outside of the holiday period.

He said: “It’s not going to be practical to carry out the work during one of the busiest weeks of the tourist season.”

It is the third statue to be presented to the borough by generous pensioner Maureen Robinson – the others are the North Bay’s Freddie Gilroy and the Belsen Stragglers and Filey’s High Tide in Short Wellies.

She had hoped it would be in place on Tuesday but said she was pleased that the installation would still go ahead. “I am over the moon. Ray has kept me informed throughout the process,” she added.

Mrs Robinson said she was pleased with the way the new statue looked and that people would be able to sit on the barrels and interact with it.

Ever since the first statue – which was based on war veteran Freddie Gilroy who was one of the first allied soldiers to enter Belsen concentration camp on its liberation during the Second World War – it has proved a popular draw for visitors.

Artist Ray Lonsdale said he was pleased with the way the smuggler statue had turned out and said it had been a challenge.

He said: “It’s a challenge because you are trying to put movement into it the little boy is struggling to lift the barrel but the man is finding it easy.”

Mr Lonsdale said he was pleased with the reaction to his work. He added: “It’s nice to have the work appreciated and accepted. What I try to do is get the work to be interactive as far as it can be, not just there to be looked at, it’s acceptable for people to climb all over them.”

At the time of going to press an exact date for the installation of the new statue was yet to be arranged.