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Last Updated: Sunday, 20 February, 2005, 17:57 GMT
Village may get seafarer's statue
Sir Walter Raleigh statue
The new statue of Raleigh will be cast in bronze
A statue of one of Devon's most famous sons could be sited in his birthplace.

Four years ago the village of East Budleigh lost its bid to have an existing statue of Sir Walter Raleigh relocated there.

The statue was moved from Whitehall Green to the Royal Academy in Greenwich leaving no local tribute to the seafarer and courtier to Elizabeth I.

Now funding of 30,000 has been secured and a sculptress has been commissioned to create a new statue.

The explorer, who was born in East Budleigh in 1552, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth I in 1587.

Sir Walter Raleigh is probably best known for bringing back potatoes and tobacco to Britain from an expedition to the New World, changing the face of food and commerce.

The funding for the statue has been secured by local MP Hugo Swire from British American Tobacco and sculptress Vivien Mallock has been commissioned to create the piece.

Parish councillors in East Budleigh have been shown a clay model, but the finished work will be a full length statue, cast in bronze.

Mr Swire says he is delighted with what has been the culmination of a long story.

He said: "I hope the statue will become a tourist attraction and I think it is very exciting that, after all these years, we will finally have a lasting tribute to our most famous local son."


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