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Amy Johnson statue project in Herne Bay gets planning permission from Canterbury City Council

By Dan Wright

A statue of legendary pilot Amy Johnson can now be erected on Herne Bay seafront after organisers gained planning permission for the project.

Council officials approved plans for the bronze bust, which will be unveiled in mid-September, earlier this month.

It means the piece – which was welded together last week – can now be built on the seafront between the bandstand and the pier.

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Image shows what the proposed Amy Johnson bronze statue could look like on Herne Bay seafront
Image shows what the proposed Amy Johnson bronze statue could look like on Herne Bay seafront

Organiser Jane Priston said: “We are massively relieved.

“The council has done everything they could and it is fair to say they pulled it off as quickly as possible.

“Now the air show is out of the way, everyone will become freer and we will work like Trojans to get to the unveiling.”

Jane Priston
Jane Priston

The statue will be unveiled on Saturday, September 17.

Prince Michael of Kent, cousin to Queen Elizabeth, has been secured by organisers to attend the revealing ceremony.

Mrs Priston, of Buller’s Avenue, added: “We are all on track and the only thing we are waiting to hear back on is the application for the opening event – this is full steam ahead now.

Prince Michael of Kent
Prince Michael of Kent

“There is still a huge amount to do and not enough time to do it.

“We are liaising with Kensington Palace almost on a daily basis.”

Flying star Amy Johnson was 37 when she crashed off the coast near the town in 1941, 11 years after becoming the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia.

Mrs Priston added that the bronze, which is being cast in Ramsgate, is now nearing completion.

Amy Johnson crashed off the coast of Herne Bay in 1941
Amy Johnson crashed off the coast of Herne Bay in 1941

She said: “The idea for the statue is that on a busy day it will blend into the crowd and in the evenings there will be a silhouette there – almost like a ghost of Amy.

“I accept that I have done everything around the wrong way, but I had to do it that way to get the bronze installed this year.

“We are all on track and everybody is delighted.”

For more details, visit the Amy Johnson Project website.

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