Waihao Forks Sculpture full steam ahead
The iconic sculpture depicting Ted D’Auvergne, the Waihao Forks soldier who left an unopened bottle of beer at the Waihao Forks Hotel intending to finish it after returning from World War 2, but was instead killed in action, is all set to be unveiled to the public on Anzac Day 2020.
A small group of locals, including Mayor Craig Rowley, has commissioned former Oamaru-based artist Donald Paterson to make a life-sized sculpture of the soldier who died in Crete in 1941, aged 35. Mr Paterson is also responsible for creating the Bushman, who sits on the corner of Queen Street and Victoria Terrace.
Mayor Rowley says, “I’m really excited to see this sculpture placed outside the Waihao Forks Hotel. The story of Ted D’Auvergne is widely known both nationally and internationally, bringing many visitors to view Ted’s Bottle and hear his story.”
“This sculpture will also commemorate all soldiers from rural New Zealand who left small communities and went off to war. A brass plaque dedicating the sculpture to The Rural Soldier will be attached to the platform.”
“We are well on our way to achieving our initial fundraising target of $46,400 – with just over $26,700 raised by the community to date, together with a $9,900 grant from the Community Trust Mid and South Canterbury.
To raise the remaining funds, the fundraising committee will be selling tickets to a monster raffle outside Waimate New World on Friday 5 July 2019, and there are plans for a second quiz at the Waihao Forks Hotel. Give-A-Little fundraising page http://givealittle.co.nz/cause/teds-bottle-sculpture. Donations can also be left at BNZ Waimate.