Town bids to honour most famous son

IPSWICH: Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson have been immortalised in stone - but now a new appeal is being launched to honour a man who really can claim to be Ipswich's most famous son.

IPSWICH: Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson have been immortalised in stone - but now a new appeal is being launched to honour a man who really can claim to be Ipswich's most famous son.

An ambitious project to honour Cardinal Wolsey was today underway - with a �1,000 boost to get the ball rolling.

The �100,000 public appeal to commission and construct an artwork tribute, probably a statue, is being backed by many civic leaders, historians and the media and is led by Dr John Blatchly, the mastermind of the St Lawrence bells project.

Thomas Wolsey was born and brought up in Ipswich before his rise to greatness, becoming Henry VIII's Chancellor - effectively the second most powerful man in Tudor England.

Wolsey's Gate and St Peter's Church, near the town's Waterfront renaissance, are all that is left of Wolsey's dream to build a great college in Ipswich - a dream captured by Shakespeare in one of his plays.

The Wolsey Artwork for Ipswich Appeal patrons were today launching the project in St Peter's Church.

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Peter Osborne, general manager of the Ramada Encore Hotel, was handing over a cheque for �1,000 to kick-start the appeal.

The launch comes just a month after the bells of St Lawrence - the oldest in Christendom - were rung again. These bells would have been heard by Wolsey as a boy.

No designs for the artwork have yet been drawn up, but it is expected that the statue will not be far from the St Peter's Street/St Nicholas Street area - that is where Thomas Wolsey was brought up during the late 15th century.

Anyone wishing to contribute should visit www.wolseyinipswich.co.uk