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‘Goddess of Victory’ is ready to take her place on memorial

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STANDING proudly and pointing towards a bright new dawn, she is a shining symbol of the price paid for freedom 100 years ago.

After a massive community effort, the resurrection of the ‘Goddess of Victory’ is just weeks away.

The statue will be one of the most poignant symbols in the commemorations being held across the area for the First World War.

The statue of the Greek goddess Nike, who personified victory, was placed on top of Horndean’s War Memorial in 1920.

But a freak incident in 1964, when a car crashed into the memorial, led to the spectacular statue being deemed unsafe.

Earlier this year Horndean Parish Council set about restoring the memorial and, in a few months, has raised £26,000, with £17,000 from grants and the rest from public subscription.

Yesterday a replica model of the goddess went on display at Merchistoun Hall in Horndean.

The clay model will be used as a basis for the statue to be carved out of Portland stone.

Sara Schillemore, a councillor for Horndean who has helped spearhead the project, said: ‘I’m thrilled to bits, she’s better than I ever thought.

‘Our block of Portland Stone is rumbling towards Yorkshire as we speak. It’s going to take 21 days to machine. They are going to make a time lapse video of it, which we will be able to keep for posterity.’

A big ceremony is planned for July 20 from 3pm for the unveiling. There will be marching bands and organisers are hoping to have a Spitfire fly past.

Dionne Hibbs, 40, from Horndean, was one of the first to see the statue design.

She said: ‘I think people should be a bit more patriotic and show things off. It puts Horndean on the map.’

Her son Samual Hibbs, three, added: ‘I think it’s good.’

Sue Harwood, from Horndean, said: ‘It’s a very good replica of the original.’

Another £9,000 in donations is still needed to pay for the project. E-mail contact@horndeanpc-hants.gov.uk

 

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