Captain Cook statue to be restored in time for summer celebrations

In need of work...the Captain Cook statue in Whitby.
In need of work...the Captain Cook statue in Whitby.

Whitby's Captain Cook statue is set to undergo much-needed cleaning and conservation works over the coming weeks, in time for the 250th anniversary summer celebrations.

The Gazette has repeatedly led calls to tidy up the statue, following a number of complaints from visitors to the town.

The Whitby Gazette has campaigned for action on the issue.

The Whitby Gazette has campaigned for action on the issue.

Now officers from Scarborough Borough Council have been working closely with representatives from the Captain Cook Tourism Association (CCTA) and conservation architect specialist ‘Purcells’ in the development of a tender brief for the works.

Following a full assessment of the statue by specialist conservation companies and subsequent tender submissions, the council has appointed the Hirst Conservation has been appointed to carry out the works, which will include repair and maintenance of the bronze work, stone plinth and plaques.

Charles Forgan from the Captain Cook Tourism Association said: “An overhaul was due after 100 years. Seagulls being seagulls, a wash will be in order from time to time, but not major works. James Cook and his statue will now be a credit to Whitby for many years to come!”

Cllr Derek Bastiman, Leader of Scarborough Borough Council added: “We are absolutely delighted that the restoration work will be carried out in time for the Cook250 Whitby Festival and we would like to thank all the organisations who have worked in partnership with ourselves to ensure that the restoration of this iconic statue is carried out during this very important anniversary year.”

The works will be overseen by Purcells and the council.

Officers together with representatives from the CCTA have been identifying funding sources to ensure that the works can be completed in time for the festival. Funding has been kindly provided from a number of organisations including The Normanby Charitable Trust, Captain Cook Tourism Association, Scarborough Borough Council, Whitby Town Council, Tesco community project and private sector donations.