The 36 Lincoln Knights statues, which formed a trail around the city, have been sold off to raise nearly £180,000 for charity. Hundreds of people gathered at the city's cathedral for the auction.
It was the Knight of Skies (pictured above) signed by the last surviving Dambuster, Johnny Johnson MBE, which went for the biggest amount - £15,000.
There was cheering and loud applause when artist Rosie Ablewhite’s mum Di Ablewhite clinched the statue. She has been passionate about Bomber Command for years, volunteering at the International Bomber Command Centre on open days and also researching its digital archive.
“My daughter Rosie has drawn Johnny Johnson in several pictures. Caroline and I had pooled our resources and were determined to get the Knight, which GAME sponsored. I was shaking while I was bidding but we got it just within our budget. Knight of the Skies will eventually be going into The Chadwick Centre at the IBCC.”
Members of The Lady Imps Supporters Association (LISA) rushed to throw a Red Imps scarf around the Lincoln City Knight, after clinching their favourite with a bid of £6,000. The money was raised through crowdfunding, bucket collections at the Barnet game, and local businesses who are supporters of the club, who believed the Knight belonged at Sincil Bank. They formed a consortium which was instrumental in allowing LISA tomake the winning bid.
“When the bidding started I thought we might be in with a shout. Then I became a bit worried, thinking that could things could become a bit tricky. But we succeeded and we are thrilled.”
Money raised by the auction will go to The Nomad Trust which supports the homeless in Lincoln. It will be used to help build a day centre to support more vulnerable people.