Humberside

David Whitfield statue unveiled in Hull

Statue of David Whitfield
Image caption David Whitfield began his career singing in working men's clubs in his home city of Hull in the 1950s

A statue of 1950s singing star David Whitfield has been unveiled in Hull.

The solid bronze 7ft (2.25m) statue is located in Kingston Square opposite the New Theatre, a venue where he performed on many occasions.

The £50,000 sculpture was paid for by donations from members of the David Whitfield Appreciation Society.

The statue was unveiled in front of hundreds of fans by the singer's widow Sheila, who said she was "overawed" by the occasion.

The statue was designed by Graham Ibbeson who was responsible for the sculpture of comedian Eric Morecambe on the promenade at the seaside resort of Morecambe.

Chart topper

Mrs Whitfield said it was a very emotional occasion to see the statue outside the city's New Theatre.

"Looking at the statue I am absolutely delighted it is where it is.

"I don't know how I held back the tears, really."

Whitfield began his singing career in the city's working men's clubs after leaving the Royal Navy in 1950.

He achieved fame after taking part in talent programme Opportunity Knocks on Radio Luxembourg.

After signing to a major record label, he released a number of songs that topped the charts in the UK.

His hits include Answer Me, I Believe and Cara Mia.

He was the first British male singer to receive a gold disc for one million record sales and the first British artist to enter the US top 10 chart.

Whitfield died in 1980 at the age of 54, while touring in Australia.

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