Statue unveiling at Wicksteed Park to mark end of lake restoration

Victor and Megan with the statue they modelled for which is on display in Wicksteed Park's paddling pool
Victor and Megan with the statue they modelled for which is on display in Wicksteed Park's paddling pool

A bronze statue showing the importance of Wicksteed Park in the development of children’s play is ready to be unveiled.

The unveiling of the statue will mark the completion of the lake restoration project.

Clare Abbatt works on the Wicksteed Park sculpture

Clare Abbatt works on the Wicksteed Park sculpture

The life-sized figures, modelled on two young visitors to the park, Megan Phillips and Victor Groves, show a girl and a boy holding hands and paddling in the lake.

The girl, dressed in 1920s clothing, is a representation of Hilda Wicksteed, the daughter of park founder Charles Wicksteed, who took over the running of the park following his death.

The sculpture will be unveiled in front of VIP guests today by Megan and Victor.

It is hoped the sculpture will become a landmark photo opportunity for generations of families as well as encouraging them to enjoy the newly-restored lake.

Victor Groves with his mother Linden, left, and sculptor Clare Abbatt

Victor Groves with his mother Linden, left, and sculptor Clare Abbatt

The restoration project was supported by the Wicksteed Charitable Trust and the Heritage Lottery Fund along with Northamptonshire County Council and Kettering Council.

Wellingborough artist Clare Abbatt was commissioned to create the sculpture.

She said: “I modelled the girl waving a welcome and encouraging children to join her and the little boy in the paddling lake.”

The two young models were selected after an appeal for volunteers by the park last year.

Megan said: “It is amazing that a sculpture of me will be in the park for years and years.”

Victor said: “Modelling for the sculpture was fun.

“I like paddling but not for too long in case the water is cold.”