Statue tribute to Summer Wine's Compo will be in place next year

LONG-DELAYED plans for a life-size statue of Compo in Holmfirth will finally come to fruition next year – six years after the idea was first suggested.

Kirklees Council has allocated 200,000 for a bronze statue showing actor Bill Owen portraying his Last of the Summer Wine character Compo Simmonite.

It is hoped it will provide a focal point for tourists visiting the town, many of whom travel from far and wide because they are fans of the long-running TV sitcom.

The 200,000 will pay for a heritage garden, complete with water feature and landscaping, which will transform Kings Head Gardens, off Huddersfield Road.

Yorkshire Water has agreed to contribute 2,000 towards the proposed water feature.

There will also be interpretation boards chronicling the history of the area, detailing centuries of hill farming, the importance of textile production and notable industries such as Bamforth postcards, who became synonymous with saucy seaside postcards.

Local artists are expected to be chosen to produce mosaics for the garden and Holmfirth-based artist Ashley Jackson is also involved in the project.

A council spokesman said an artist had yet to be chosen to design the statue.

It is anticipated that the project will be completed in 2010, the spokesman added.