Statue of football legend Jack Charlton to be installed in Ashington park

A statue of Jack Charlton will be installed at Hirst Park in Ashington, where he was spotted by Leeds United scouts. Credit: PA Images

Work is set to get underway to construct a statue of Jack Charlton in his hometown of Ashington in Northumberland, following a successful fundraising campaign.

The footballing legend was part of the 1966 World Cup winning team, as well as managing Middlesbrough and Newcastle United.

Following Jack’s death in July 2020, at the age of 85, an appeal was started to raise funds to commission a statue at Hirst Park.

Jack was spotted by Leeds United scouts whilst playing football in the park and described the pitches as his and brother Bobby's first training ground.

Jack during his time playing for Leeds United. Credit: PA Images

Ashington Town Council has appointed nationally recognised artist and sculptor Douglas Jennings to develop the statue. Mr Jennings has created a number of footballing statues including George Cohen, Jonny Haynes and former England manager Graham Taylor and he is delighted to have been selected for this project.

Cllr Liam Lavery, Deputy Leader of Ashington Town Council and who has led the Statue Working Group, said:

"After months of hard work and fundraising behind the scenes, I am thrilled that we have reached the funding target and the Council has approved the commission of Mr Jennings to develop the project. The last year has been so hard for many people but the amount of support we've received from individuals, businesses, community organisations, councillors as well as the Town Council itself has been incredible."

Jack spoke about Hirst Park, in 2016, after it was named as one of 12 parks across the country to receive a share of £32 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund.

Ashington Town Council has been asked to work in partnership with Northumberland County Council on a project to commemorate the footballing achievements of the Charlton brothers in the famous World Cup win.