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Life-size statue of Harry Styles to be erected in Redditch town centre
Updated 10:20am Tuesday 1st April 2014 in Local
THE Advertiser can exclusively reveal that a life-size statue of One Direction heart-throb Harry Styles is set to be erected in Redditch town centre.
The news comes just a month after the town came top of a list of the least musical parts of the UK - something many residents, MPs and councillors fiercely objected to.
The study, published in the PLOS ONE journal, was carried out by researchers from Goldsmiths, University of London and BBC Lab UK and claims to have found a correlation between how musical people are and the average income of the area where they live.
Campaigners and musical enthusiasts in the town have been fighting to shake off the tag ever since with many citing Redditch's famous musical sons such as Led Zeppelin legend John Bonham, Dodgy frontman Nigel Clark, and of course Harry Styles.
In the past there have been calls for a John Bonham statue to be placed in Redditch but it is unclear now if that will happen.
Mary Simpson from campaign group Make Redditch Good was awarded funding, believed to be more than £12,000, after writing to think thank the Institute of Musical Studies in London.
Mrs Simpson said: "I never thought this would happen. I wrote to a few places telling them how great the town is and that Harry Styles was born here - how can a town that he's from be musically unsophisticated?
"I never thought in a million years that I would be offered funding and the only thing I could think of was for a statue of the singer. But, after all the bad press Redditch has had recently they must have felt sorry for us.
"It will be a huge boost for the town - think of all the tourists that will have a reason to visit now."
The mature student added: "I'm still in shock this is happening, it's absolutely great that we will have a huge statue of Harry in the town."
Prof Don Brodka from the foundation said: "We have helped people get grants for all sorts of things from bands touring abroad, tech start-ups and art shops and social enterprises expanding.
"It is great for us to know that people will benefit from this cash and help the town prove that it is indeed very musical."
It is hoped the statue will be unveiled later this year as part of a huge music festival featuring a number of well known, as well as local, musical acts.
It is not yet known exactly where the life-size statue will be placed, but it could be outside St Stephen's Church.
For the latest information, keep checking the Advertiser website.