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Statue tribute to footballer planned

Fri 15 July 2016, 10:24 am

Waltham Forest Council is asking residents, businesses and football fans to donate towards erecting a statue of former Leyton Orient player Laurie Cunningham.

The statue will be installed in Coronation Gardens near the club’s stadium where Cunningham first played. 

He played for the club in 1974 and went on to win six caps for England and join Real Madrid. Tragically, the footballer was killed in a car crash in the Spanish capital in 1989. 

Chris Robbins, leader of Waltham Forest Council, which has committed to pay half the costs towards the statue, said: “Laurie Cunningham made a huge impact on the footballing world at a time when racism was rife in the game.

“He holds a special place in the heart of Orient fans and local residents alike and we want a permanent tribute to the man and his achievements, which will also act as a celebration of how well people from all different backgrounds get along in this borough.” 

The statue is set to cost a little more than £100,000, for which the council is looking to raise up to £50,000. 

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