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King Charles IIIQueen Elizabeth II

King Charles III to unveil first posthumous statue of Queen Elizabeth II on York visit

King Charles III will unveil a statue of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II, in York as part of a two-day visit to Yorkshire, marking the first posthumous statue of the late monarch.

The two-metre (6ft 7in) statue will sit on an empty niche adjacent to the South West Door on the West Front of the 800-year-old York Minister Cathedral. The statue was initially planned to be unveiled in September to mark the Platinum Jubilee, but the unveiling was put on hold following the 8 September death of Her Late Majesty.

The King will be joined by The Queen Consort as they are greeted by civic dignitaries at York’s Micklegate Bar before they attend a service before the official unveiling of the statue.

York’s Lord Mayor David Carr said of the visit, “I am thrilled to be able to welcome him on what I am certain will be a day which combines great joy at his visit and reflection on the great service and legacy of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II.”:

Expert architectural carver and stone mason Richard Bosson designed the statue. A part of York Minister’s Stoneyard team since 2011, he designed the late monarch in her Garter robes with the orb and sceptre – the symbols of her office as Head of Church and State. In addition, Queen Elizabeth II is wearing the George IV State Diadem.

Carved from a block of Lepine stone, the French stone has been previously used for other figurative carvings on the Minister, as well as the restoration of the West Window in 2000. In the end, the statue will weigh nearly two tonnes.

Bossons said of creating the statue: “There have been several challenges to overcome with this project in terms of the design.  First and foremost, I have to complement the magnificent medieval façade of the Minster.  The statue needs to be part of the fabric, not a distraction from it, yet it also has to have the poise and presence befitting of the Queen’s unique role as Head of Church and State.  The figure is posed to form a protective gesture around the orb and sceptre, while Her Majesty’s gaze is aligned across the proposed Queen Elizabeth Square, the principal approach to York Minster.  She will stand proud and resolute in her niche, welcoming worshippers and visitors alike.”

Following the visit to York, the royal couple will travel to Doncaster, which is one of the eight towns granted city status as part of Platinum Jubilee celebrations. In addition, the couple will visit Bradford and Leeds before returning home to London.

About author

My name is Sydney Zatz and I am a University of Iowa graduate. I graduated with a degree in journalism and sports studies, and a minor in sport and recreation management. A highlight of my college career was getting the chance to study abroad in London and experiencing royal history firsthand. I have a passion for royals, royal history, and journalism, which led me to want to write for Royal Central.