Page last updated at 09:02 GMT, Wednesday, 9 July 2008 10:02 UK

New statue to celebrate 750 years

The West Front of Salisbury Cathedral
The statue will join 67 other statues already positioned on the west front

A new statue will be mounted on Salisbury Cathedral in Wiltshire to celebrate the 750th anniversary of its consecration.

The statue of Canon Ezra, a Sudanese priest and martyr, was chosen because it is also the 35th anniversary of a link Salisbury has with Sudan.

Created by Jason Battle, the piece is the fifth statue he has made for the medieval cathedral's west front.

The statue will be lifted into position in a frame attached to a 10-ton crane.

The statue, of Canon Ezra Baya Lawiri will join 67 other statues already positioned on the west front and was commissioned with the support of The Friends of Salisbury Cathedral.

Statue of Canon Ezra
Canon Ezra Baya Lawiri was killed in Sudan in 1991

Mark Bonney, of Salisbury Cathedral, said: "Canon Ezra Baya Lawiri was born in 1917, and was a priest, biblical scholar and translator.

"He was killed by a shell in 1991 when he was caught in the crossfire of fierce fighting between government forces and the Sudan People's Liberation Army just outside Rokom."

Mr Battle, who was the head carver of the recent repair and conservation of the west front of the building, said: "People are seeing the statue for the first time and, as I've been carving over the months, some of the things I'm not terribly happy with are going to scream out at me. People's comments so far have been very positive."




SEE ALSO
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16 Jun 08 |  Wiltshire
Cathedral lit up after donation
30 Apr 08 |  Wiltshire
Stonemasons to restore cathedral
15 Dec 07 |  Wiltshire
Cash boost for cathedral repairs
15 Feb 07 |  England

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