Norway: Life-size sculpture of euthanized 'Freya' the walrus unveiled in Oslo

Freya the walrus gained global attention as she toured northern Europe and has now been immortalised with a life-size statue. ITV News' Bairbre Holmes reports

A walrus which became a global celebrity last year after it was seen basking in a Norwegian fjord before it was euthanized has been honored with a bronze sculpture.

Norwegian artist Astri Tonoian created the statue, which was unveiled on Saturday at the Oslo marina - a short distance from where the 600 kilogram (1,300 pound) mammal was seen resting during the summer of 2022.

The walrus, named Freya after the Norse goddess of love, quickly became a popular attraction among Oslo residents.

Freya also spent time on the North East coast of England, attracting crowds of people to catch a sight of the walrus after being spotted on the rocks at Seahouses, Northumberland, in November last year.

However, Norwegian authorities later made the decision to euthanize it, causing public outrage because they said people had not followed recommendations to keep a safe distance away.

Norwegian news agency NTB said a crowdfunding campaign was set up last year to finance the sculpture.

The private initiative managed to gather about 270,000 Norwegian kroner (£20,196) by October, NTB said.

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