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Home town gains Andy Capp statue
28 Jun 2007 13:05 BST

A statue of loveable comic strip character Andy Capp has been unveiled by his creator's widow.

Jean Smythe, wife of Hartlepool artist Reg Smythe, unmasked the 5ft high bronze sculpture in the town's Headland area on Thursday.

The statue, by Shropshire artist Jane Robbins, captures the working class hero in a typically relaxed pose, but minus his trademark cigarette.

The cartoon first appeared in editions of the Daily Mirror in 1957.

The £20,000 monument now has pride of place outside the Harbour of Refuge pub, in Croft Terrace.

Mrs Smythe, who still lives in the town, said: "I am very pleased that it has happened.

"I would have thought that Reg would have really liked it, well I am hoping he would have done.

"The people of Hartlepool have shown a real dedication in insisting this project would go ahead and they got there in the end and I would like to thank them for it."