Rugby's first public commemoration of the game of Rugby was unveiled by Jeremy Guscott on 26th September 1997.The bronze statue, by Graham Ibbeson and modeled after his own son, cost £40,000 which was raised by a public appeal. The bronze statue of a boy running with a Rugby ball, cast using the lost wax technique, now stands at the junction of Lawrence Sheriff Street and Dunchurch Road, beside the school and opposite Gilbert's museum.
In 1988, artist Ivor Robert-Jones was commissioned to create the statue of Rupert Brooke that now stands in Jubilee Gardens on the site of the old outdoor baths. It was unveiled by Mary Archer in memory of the poet who was born in Rugby and attended Rugby School. More information on Rupert Brooke can be found at the website of the Rupert Brooke Society.
Brick Relief of Industrial Rugby
Installed in February 2000. The sculpture relief contains images of the industrial history of Rugby. Its cement works - RUGBY cement, are still based there today. The train refers to the railway history of the town where there was a locomotive testing station and several railway companies had stations there including the London - Birmingham and Midland counties railway companies. The strange looking machine in the middle of the artwork is a Willans steam turbine generator, built around the turn of the century.On the right hand side a canal boat and bridge no 9 are depicted, as the Oxford canal was built around the Town of Rugby in 1773. Soaring above are Gloster Meteor jets, the designer of the Jet engine, Frank Whittle made his first prototype jet engines at the British Thomson Houston factory at Rugby. In the distance are the radio masts, which can still be seen from the M1 motorway going south past Rugby. Designed by Art for Architecture
5 metres high, fabricated in mild steel, designed and made by Paul Margetts.
The sculpture was erected in 2002 and describes the rescue of a young child in a blanket by a fire fighter. The fire fighter's arm is raised in celebration and is also outstretched over Rugby to suggest the protection given to the town by the Fire Service.
The project was funded jointly by the Millennium Commission, Rugby Borough Council, and Warwickshire County Council, while a team, including the Fire Service came together to help achieve the design.
The Three Donkeys
The three donkeys stand in a small area of green space named the Donkey Paddock, adjacent to the West Coast Mainline Railway on Newbold Road.
Historically the site had a row of railway cottages that abutted the road with a paddock at the rear, whilst the bridge on Newbold Road was the location of the original station. Rumour has it that there were always either horses or donkeys in the paddock to the rear, hence the origin of its name.
The area was improved in 2000 with the creation of a plantation area and the support of the local Rotary Club.
In 2004 Banbury artist David Gosling was commissioned to create the "three donkey sculpture" that has proved very popular with local people and visitors a like. These were named William, Webb and Ellis by the local radio station.
Frank Whittle Sculpture
The 4.8 metre high bronze, created by sculptor Stephen Broadbent, is a visionary piece. The artist sourced his inspiration from paintings by Rod Lovesey, which depict Frank Whittle in 1937 testing the prototype jet engine at the British Thompson-Houston factory in Rugby.
The design was voted for by the public from a short list of three submissions following public exhibitions at the Rugby Art Galley Museum & Library and Ken Marriott Leisure Centre
Contributions from the public, local businesses and funding from Rugby Borough Council and Warwickshire County Council made the commemoration possible.