The newly restored Queen Victoria Statue is to be unveiled this week as a key milestone in the £1.7million restoration of Victoria Embankment’s Memorial Gardens.
The unveiling is to take place on Friday 14 October at 12pm, following months of painstaking work by master craftsmen Bonsers who have cleaned the stone statue of Queen Victoria, granite plinth and bronze plaques, repaired the sceptre, replaced and repaired some fingers that were missing. Raked out using hand tools mortar joints, then cleaned and repointed using lime mortar. The Grade II listed statue was created by the sculptor Albert Toft and was unveiled in 1905. Originally located in the Market Square, the statue was moved to the Victoria Embankment in 1953.
The whole restoration project is funded by £1.1million from the National Lottery Heritage Fund along with match funding from The Transforming Cities Fund, The War Memorials Trust and Nottingham City Council. The overall project is due to be completed by the end of 2022 and also includes:
- Restoration of the war Memorial which was unveiled in 1927
- Restoration of the pond and fountains
- Improving paths and access
- Re-planting original flower beds
- Installing new furniture
- Creation of a visitor centre and toilets
- Creation of jobs
- Development of a World War 2 Roll of Honours
- Community engagement activities and events.
Cllr Audra Wynter, Nottingham City Council Portfolio Holder for Highways, Transport and Parks, said: “I am delighted to see the fantastic progress being made on the restoration of the Memorial Gardens. The Gardens are of great importance and have been an asset to Nottingham for nearly 100 years. In 2019 we completed the World War One Memorial and this additional funding will allow future generations to re-discover the site as a place for contemplation, relaxation and recreation within the local community.”