Plans go in for majestic war horse statue

An image of what the finished War Horse could look like. Image provided by Featherstone Town Council and courtesy of Cod Steaks
An image of what the finished War Horse could look like. Image provided by Featherstone Town Council and courtesy of Cod Steaks

Plans to build a giant war horse statue to pay tribute to Featherstone’s fallen war heroes have been submitted to Wakefield Council.

Artist Sue Lipscombe of Cod Steaks and Featherstone Town Council want to site the majestic 20ft sculpture in the town’s memorial wood to remember soldiers who lost their lives during the First World War and to honour the town’s farming and mining history.

Town councillor Coun Margaret Isherwood: “Everything is hanging on the planning permission at the minute. We have got all fingers crossed for approval. The war horse will be absolutely amazing for the local area as well as paying tribute to our town’s fallen soldiers.

“We are hoping that it will become an attraction not just locally but nationally too, something that people who visit Featherstone and the wider Wakefield district come to see.

“We do not just want to stop there with enhancing the area. We are looking at preparing an app with a tour around Featherstone, starting at the war horse.

“There’s a lot of history in Featherstone and we want this app to take people around sites of historical interest.”

The sculpture will be made of steel and clad in locally-grown willow, with Wild Poppies and French Bluets planted at its feet.

It will be built at the edge of Mill Pond Meadow, where more than 350 trees have been planted, each one honouring the life of a fallen soldier, to form the memorial wood. Schoolchildren will be involved in the project and have already taken part in workshops to build models of the sculpture.

In a leaflet about the project, Cod Steaks said: “War Horse will stand as a proud testimony to local heroes whose lives were lost. It will mark a sense of place where people are drawn to meet, spend time in reflection or simply to enjoy the artwork and surroundings.”

If planning permission is approved, applications for grants to fund the project can then be submitted.