by Chris Tobin
Further fundraising events are planned this year to enable a life-sized statue of soldier Ted d’Auvergne to be erected outside the Waihao Forks Hotel.
“The fundraising committee is targeting to have raised approximately half the amount required, or $17,500, by April to enable artist Donald Paterson to begin the sculpture,” Waimate District Council communications officer Alena Lynch said.
As of last month just over $9200 had been banked at the BNZ in Waimate, and $1720 pledged on a Givealittle page. At the end of last year council staff held a World War 2 morning tea and raised $160.
“We are aiming to have a public launch of the sculpture on or before Anzac Day 2020.”
The idea of a statue originated at a meeting of the Waimate Community Anzac Group last year.
Waimate Mayor Craig Rowley said a small committee had been formed to raise money for the project, which was expected to have a final cost of about $50,000.
Former Oamaru artist Donald Paterson has one other statue in the district, the Bushman in Waimate’s Queen St.
Private d’Auvergne died, aged 35, in Crete in 1941, where he was serving with the New Zealand Army. A bottle of beer he asked to be kept at his local hotel, the Waihao Forks Hotel, until his return is still at the hotel.