The great-great-granddaughter of Edwin Stirling, the sculptor who created the statue of Prince Albert, visited Hastings to view it in its new location.
The statue was installed outside Hastings Town Hall on Wednesday, September 27 thanks to the work of local heritage enthusiasts.
Kelly Stirling flew from California to view the statue in its new location on Monday, October 30. She has been avidly following the project after spotting an Observer article about plans to relocate the statue during research into her family history. At the time of her first visit, it was stored in an old greenhouse in Alexandra Park and listed as “at risk” by the Public Monuments and Sculptures Association.
Kelly was greeted by the mayor Cllr Judy Rogers, and members of the Albert Statue Group formed to oversee the move. Unfortunately the chairman Steven Whitfield was unable to attend but other group members and the trustees – Lynn Gausden, David Robinson, Brian and Shirley Lawes – were present.
Representatives of local history groups were also there. Val Vint attended on behalf of the Lions, who made a generous donation to the project. Roger Wilcox, a local stonemason who had both advised and given so much practical assistance, was present and Kevin Boorman, marketing and major projects manager for Hasting Borough Council, also attended.
Kelly expressed her appreciation to everyone involved and was delighted with the successful outcome.
A small amount of restoration still needs to be done and donations are invited, payable to The Albert Statue Group c/o 124 Edmund Road, Hastings, TN35 5LQ.