Duke of Wellingon at Woodhouse Moor
Baron Carlo Marochetti
Article by: Richard Handscombe - First Published: 5th December 2012
This statue, costing £1,500 in 1855, originally stood in front of Leeds Town Hall.
The statue was commissioned by the city's foremost citizens following the death of the Grand Duke in 1852, amidst some controversy over the choice of a foreign sculptor (Marochetti* was born in Italy). The statue was proudly sited in front of the brand new Town Hall, which was then under construction on Lower Briggate. It was then boarded up until Queen Victoria came to Leeds to open the Town Hall in 1858.
It stood proudly before the Town Hall until 1937 when the layout of the square in front of the building was altered. Together with the statues of Queen Victoria and Sir Henry Marsden, The Duke's statue was removed to Woodhouse Moor where it is still to be seen at the southern corner of the Moor, opposite the Leeds University Business School, at the intersection of Moorland Road and Clarendon Road.
The statue still retains some of it's original colouring; the Dukes boots are red.
* Carlo Marochetti, although Italian-born, was brought up a French citizen, and came to the United Kingdom in 1848 after the fall of the French monarchy. He became a favourite sculptor of Queen Victoria, and worked with Sir Edwin Landseer on the bronze lions at the foot of Nelson's Column in Trafalgar Square, casting them at his foundry. His statue of Richard the Lionheart still stands outside the Palace of Westminster, and his statue of Robert Stephenson remains in the forecourt of Euston Station.
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