BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 16 August 2007, 15:08 GMT 16:08 UK
Comedy duo statue a step closer
Laurel and Hardy
The pair made a public appearance in Ulverston in 1947
Plans to erect a statue of Laurel and Hardy in a Cumbrian town have moved a step closer with a 100,000 grant to transform its intended home.

South Lakeland District Council has awarded the cash to a project to improve County Square in Ulverston.

The bronze tribute, created by sculptor Graham Ibbeson, has been waiting in storage since 2005 but it is now hoped it can be erected within 18 months.

Stan Laurel was born in the town in 1890 before moving to the US in 1916.

The statue captures the silver screen legends leaning against a fully working lamppost with a dog yapping at their feet.

Morecambe statue

It will be positioned on the pavement outside the Coronation Hall theatre, where the duo made a public appearance on the balcony in 1947.

The sculptor also created the Eric Morecambe statue, which was unveiled in Morecambe, Lancashire, in 1999.

Jayne Kendall, the council's market towns initiative officer, said she hoped the Ulverston statue would prove as popular.

She said: "The Morecambe statue helps attract 100,000 visitors every year and if the sculpture in Ulverston brings in only a percentage of that it will still be a good result for the town.

"I anticipate that the statue will be in place within the next 18 months but it all depends on when work to improve the square is finished."

Access to the County Square is being upgraded as part of a 400,000 scheme, with funding from the council, English Heritage and the Friends of the Laurel and Hardy Statue group.

Comic legend's archive auctioned
21 Jun 04 |  England

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific