A stunning new bench featuring Wallace and Gromit sculptures is being installed in Preston this summer, to celebrate the city's famous son, Nick Park!
The bronze bench takes inspiration from a classic moment in The Wrong Trousers and will be installed outside Preston Market later this year, allowing visitors to have their photo taken with Nick's much-loved characters.
The bench has been designed by Nick and the team at Aardman, with the help of local sculptor Peter Hodgkinson, and is currently being lovingly brought to life at the Castle Fine Arts Foundry in Wales. As part of a wider investment to encourage people to enjoy their cities again after the pandemic, organisers are hoping to get the bench installed in August this year, providing the perfect summer holiday photo opportunity for visitors and Preston residents alike.
Nick Park was born in Preston and began his studies at Preston College, where the library is named after him, before going on to study Communication Art at Sheffield Polytechnic, followed by animation at the National Film and Television School. It was while studying at the NFTS that Nick met Aardman founders Peter Lord and David Sproxton, who were impressed with the film he was working on at the time, A Grand Day Out. The duo persuaded Nick to join them at Aardman and the rest is history!
Commenting on the sculpture, Nick Park, said: “It is such a great honour for me, as a proud Prestonian, to see my characters Wallace and Gromit cast in bronze and given pride of place in my hometown.”
John Chesworth, chair of the Preston Partnership and the Preston Towns Fund Board, said: “Nick is one of our most famous living Prestonians and it’s great that we can celebrate his achievements with this new sculpture. Wallace & Gromit are familiar to millions and the films are hugely popular with all age groups. We very much look forward to welcoming the duo to Preston and to inviting people to come into the city centre to visit them."