The piece of Hartlepool history that is being auctioned off for £25,000 statue project

A little piece of Hartlepool history is set to go under the hammer to boost funds for a replacement town statue.

Friday, 2nd April 2021, 10:15 am
Stephen Close with the original 1906 Healthful Hartlepool poster he is auctioning off.
Stephen Close with the original 1906 Healthful Hartlepool poster he is auctioning off.

Town businessman Stephen Close is auctioning off a framed original Healthful Hartlepool tourism poster from 1906.

It was made at a time when Hartlepool and Seaton Carew were popular tourist destinations aided by the growth of public railways as holidays for ordinary people became more commonplace.

Proceeds from its sale will go towards a £25,000 project for a new Boer War statue, in Ward Jackson Park, to replace the original one which was stolen in 1968.

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The approved design of the replacement Boer War statue for Ward Jackson Park.

Mr Close acquired the immaculate poster from the family of the late Doug Ferriday, a well-known photographer of Stockton Road and former councillor and mayor of Hartlepool.

He said: “It had been rolled up in the dark for decades and has kept its colour beautifully. I framed it five years ago for this purpose so it’s time to let it go.

“Bidding has already reached £550 so we are hopeful of a lot higher.

“I am committed to replacing the statue of the 23 Hartlepool men that died in that conflict. We should always honour our war dead.”

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The poster describes Hartlepool as Durham’s Health and Holiday Resort and boasts of “the most bracing sea air in the kingdom”.

Prints of it continue to be made and sold today.

Mr Close says he will deliver and fix the poster anywhere in the North East and give a bottle of Moet champagne and a box of chocolates to the winning bidder.

For several years Mr Close has worked on the project for the new statue to honour Hartlepool soldiers who died in the Boer War fought in South Africa between 1899 and 1902.

Only the original granite plinth recording the names of the fallen remains in Ward Jackson Park.

Hartlepool Borough Council granted planning permission for the new statue which has been designed by North East artist and fabricator Ray Lonsdale who created Seaham’s Tommy statue.

Bids for the framed Healthful Hartlepool poster can be sent by email to [email protected] by 9pm on Monday, April 12.

So far the appeal has reached £11,000 and donations can be made at www.gofundme.com/the-replacement-boer-war-statue

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