Unveiled: Knaresborough's Mother Shipton statue is 'a knock-out'

Visitors and residents of Knaresborough gathered in the masses at the weekend, to watch the grand unveiling of a £43,000 Mother Shipton statue.

Tuesday, 3rd October 2017, 11:09 am
Updated Wednesday, 4th October 2017, 3:17 pm
Angela James admires the statue of Mother Shipton with the sculpture Chris Kelly and Mike Owen. (1709301AM3)

The Market Place was littered with people under the autumn sun as the tribute to one of Knaresborough's most historical figures was revealed on Saturday, September 30.

The project has taken some four years to bring to fruition, and was launched by the Mother Shipton Appeal Committee - a group of dedicated volunteers.

Mayor of Harrogate Councillor Anne Jones attended the unveiling and paid tribute to the hard work of all the volunteers involved, including the ladies at the Church on Gracious Street who "pulled out all the stops to put on a great reception".

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Angela James admires the statue of Mother Shipton with the sculpture Chris Kelly and Mike Owen. (1709301AM3)

Coun Jones said: "It was a wonderful atmosphere and of course we had Angela L James from the George A Moore Foundation there too.

"The whole event was quite joyous and I think Mother Shipton was very well received!

"Areas are built on these traditions. I think it's a great attraction for the town, Knaresborough is a tourist destination, people come along not only for the historic value of the town but I think this is just another attraction that will pull in the numbers."

One of the major donors to the project had been the George A Moore Foundation, and as such, Angela L James, daughter of George A Moore, was invited to unveil the bronze seated statue.

Angela James admires the statue of Mother Shipton with the sculpture Chris Kelly and Mike Owen. (1709301AM3)

In the last few weeks, the statue had been receiving its final touches from Harrogate sculptor, Chris Kelly.

But the project was first launched in 2013, and since then it has had the support and backing of many local businesses and organisations.

Alongside Mr Kelly, and his committee members, the unveiling has in part been made possible by Marketing Officer, Michael Owen, who has overseen the fundraising since 2015.

Mr Owen said: "We had a lot of people there, about a thousand people turned up. The weather was very kind to us and the statue is simply a knock out - it's going to lift Harrogate and Knaresborough and I'm sure that it will soon become a famous piece of 21st century foundry art.

"It's been four years and to be over the line is just wonderful. There was a tremendous sense of pride that we have given something to the community and to Knaresborough.

"It's a community effort, we have had backing from businesses, organisations and even individuals within Harrogate and Knaresborough. It's something that all of Yorkshire can be proud of."