Vote for face you want on special bench

WHICH celeb would you like to share a seat with? Ian Dury, Frank Lampard or Henry VIII, perhaps?

Havering Council is giving residents a chance to vote for famous faces they would like to see on a special portrait bench, from today (Monday January 10) at Harold Hill Library.

The bench, to be placed in Central Park, Harold Hill, is part of a new art initiative funded by sustainable transport charity, Sustrans.

Three local figures will be immortalised in steel portraits.

Residents and schoolchildren from Mead and Brookside Primary Schools, were invited to put forward figures to go on the bench, at the end of last year.

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There were more than 30 nominations in all, and six finalists were chosen to go to a public vote for the final three.

The shortlist is:

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Harry Norman Eccleston OBE – designer of the D-series banknotes who lived in Harold Hill

Ian Dury – musician from Upminster and the only singer to mention Harold Hill in a song

Frank Lampard – England and Chelsea footballer, originally from Romford

Dick Bouchard MBE – founder of the Romford Drum and Trumpet Corps

Henry VIII – historical King of England who hunted in the local area

Samuel Pepys – famous diarist who visited the Neave family at the Manor.

Residents have until Monday January 24 to vote at the library and the completed bench will be unveiled in May.

Residents can also vote by writing to Catherine Robinson, London Borough of Havering, at: 9th Floor Mercury House, Romford RM1 3SL, calling: 01708 434596; or email:

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