Plans are under way in Bedford to create a bust in memory of the visit to the town of the famous Italian general Giuseppe Garibaldi.
A Bedford man aims to preserve the memory of Giuseppe Garibaldi
The soldier known as the "Father of Italy" planted a redwood tree during a visit in 1864, but only a stump remains after it was struck by lightning.
Garibaldi waged a life-long war against the pope and was honoured in the home town of famous protestant John Bunyan.
Councillor David Fowler has begun a campaign to preserve the memorial.
He said that the tree and its remains were an important part of Bedford's heritage and a link to historic world events.
Bust of Garibaldi
Garibaldi was a major influence on the founding of Italy as a unified country in the 19th century.
Bedford is also home to a large Italian community that settled there during and after the Second World War.
He said: "We would like to carve the stump into the shape of a bust of Garibaldi mounted on the site of the tree under cover.
"Alternatively we would like the bust to be in a museum but whatever the outcome we are starting to raise funds."