Celebration of 1966 World Cup win at iconic Upton Park statue
PUBLISHED: 16:36 01 August 2016 | UPDATED: 16:36 01 August 2016
The local community came out in full force to celebrate England’s 1966 World Cup triumph at the famous Champions Statue.
Car horns were blaring as West Ham fans sang ‘Bubbles’ with old and young people alike participating in a show of local and national pride in East Ham on Saturday.
The celebrations, held 50 years to the day of Bobby Moore and co’s 4-2 victory over West Germany, were also used to show the community’s sense of pride and passion for the iconic sculpture.
“It was good fun with everybody joining in and enjoying the day,” said East Ham MP Stephen Timms. “It was a good opportunity to be at the statue and to highlight the point that it should stay where it is.”
“That was where West Ham played for 112 years and it’s important it remains as a reminder for future generations.”
The impromptu event was organised by Cecilia Welsh, who set up an online petition to save the statue in May, with local residents, fans, tourists and councillors joining in the celebrations.
Cllr Veronica Oakeshott echoed the sentiment of Mr Timms and said the statue is a source of pride for the Upton Park community.
“It’s brilliant to be able to celebrate our Boleyn heritage today. Without our boys, there would have been no World Cup win!
“It was great to see so many visitors come to see the statue. They all want the statue to stay in the area as it’s part of the history of West Ham at the Boleyn,” said Cllr Oakeshott.
A decision has yet to be made about the future of the Champions Statue with the proposed move to the new stadium in the Olympic Park dependent on the club meeting stringent conditions set by the council.
Dominic Wilson, a teacher from Barking Road, believes the club should build another statue for their new ground.
“It’s our cultural heritage. It was made in and for Upton Park and must stay here. If they want a statue at the new stadium, make a copy,” said Dominic.
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