The famous Robin Hood statue near Nottingham Castle is to be re-cast into an identical statue and presented as a gift to Nottingham’s sister city in China Ningbo.
Flexural Composites Research Fellow at Nottingham Trent University Richard Arm will start work on Monday 3 August, taking a mould of the Robin Hood statue. This process is anticipated to take four to six days. During this period the statue will be fenced off to enable the moulding to take place, although members of the public will be able to see the work progressing. The moulding process has been used on delicate and valuable artefacts across the world such as ancient Mesopotamian plaques, and will not damage the statue in any in way. In fact the moulding process and subsequent cleaning of the statue will leave it looking as it did when it was first cast and unveiled in 1952.
Once completed, Richard will use the mould in the University studio to cast a full-size replica Robin Hood statue. This statue will then be flown out to Ningbo in China in time for an official unveiling ceremony during the Nottingham trade mission to Ningbo, 2 – 11 November.
The family of the sculptor of the Robin Hood statue, the late James Woodford OBE, RA, has given its full support for this project. James Woodford, son of the sculptor of the Robin Hood statue, said: “The family is delighted that one of my father’s most iconic works is to be perpetuated in this way and I am sure my father would have been very pleased.”
The University of Nottingham became the first foreign university to establish an independent campus in China, which opened to students in 2004. The University of Nottingham campus in Ningbo mirrors that of Nottingham, complete with lake and its own version of Nottingham’s famous Trent Building. With the gift of the replica Robin Hood statue, Ningbo will soon also boast another iconic Nottingham landmark.
The gift of the world-famous Robin Hood statue further cements the existing relationship between Nottingham and Ningbo, and helps to raise the profile of Nottingham in China – one of the world’s fastest growing economies – forging important links in trade, education, and research between the two cities. The trade mission to Ningbo will provide Nottingham businesses with a great opportunity to further develop the commercial links that have grown so strongly over the last ten years since Nottingham and Ningbo became sister cities.
Nottingham City Council Leader, Councillor Jon Collins said: “Robin Hood is famous the world over as a hero and icon. We recognise that the Robin Hood legend is a vital asset for the city of Nottingham. It is an honour to present a replica of our Robin Hood statue, so well loved by our city, to the people of Ningbo. This gift reinforces the very close bond we have forged with the city of Ningbo which is to the mutual benefit of both cities, our citizens, and our business communities. We are very happy to be able to pay tribute to Ningbo in this way.”
Councillor Nick McDonald, Portfolio Holder for Jobs, Growth and Transport at Nottingham City Council, added: “The gift of the Robin Hood statue will only help to further enhance the links we share with Ningbo in many areas including in trade, education, research, and technology, which bring real economic benefits to both our cities.”