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Sir Stanley Matthews



Sir Stanley Matthews statue
The statue has 3 figures depicting Sir Stanley at different stages of his career

When Stoke City's most famous son, Sir Stanley Matthews died in 2000, work on a permanent memorial at their Britannia Stadium home began.

Three nine-foot statues were made by local artists, showing Sir Stan at different stages of his 30 year career.

The statues look out over the club's old Victoria Ground, where he played.

The figures, which took a whole year to craft, were fashioned from clay dug up less than four miles away from where they now stand and then cast.

Much of the initial work was carried out at the Britannia Stadium, with the help of Stoke City fans.

The Wizard of Dribble

Sculptor

Carl Payne, one of the sculptors, refers to the work as The Evolution Of Sir Stan As The Wizard Of Dribble.

He said: "Historically it is absolutely correct. People who knew Stan even donated his old football boots so we could get it authentic - right down to the last eyelet."

"All the balls are in the right era and the strip, even the rope around the shorts of Sir Stan when he was a young lad and made his debut for Stoke."

The statue was officially unveiled on October 27, 2001, before Stoke City's home Second Division match against Bristol City.

Thousands of football fans attended the unveiling and there was a huge round of applause, when the covers were drawn back and the monument was revealed.

Movement and balance

Former England manager Kevin Keegan, helped Sir Stanley's daughter, Jean Gough, take the wraps off.

Kevin Keegan

The Sir Stanley Matthews' Foundation enlisted the help of England captain David Beckham, the Professional Footballers' Association and the Football Association to raise funds for the tribute.

Foundation committee chairman and Stoke City commentator Nigel Johnson said: "The committee has worked tremendously hard to reach this stage and appreciates the support it has been given from many quarters."

Sir Stan's daughter, Jean Gough, was delighted to see the finished memorial.

She said: "It's absolutely magnificent. It's so lifelike and the movement and balance is there. It kind of makes me want to cry. It's come home."




SEE ALSO
Stanley Matthews' boots for sale
04 Feb 10 |  Staffordshire
Final farewell to Sir Stan
03 Mar 00 |  UK
Your memories of Sir Stanley
27 Feb 00 |  Talking Point
Fans mourn Sir Stanley
24 Feb 00 |  Football
Tributes for 'magical' Sir Stanley
23 Feb 00 |  Football

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