Campaigning for statue of Sherlock in Crowborough
A SIR Arthur Conan Doyle enthusiast has launched a campaign to raise £50,000 for a statue of the world's most famous fictional detective to be erected in Crowborough.
Mike Tuffley said a statue of Sherlock Holmes at the home of his creator would attract visitors from all over the world.
He has now set up the Sherlock Holmes Trust Fund and is asking people and businesses to donate.
"People are fascinated and intrigued by Sherlock Holmes stories," said Mr Tuffley.
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"In 1912 hundreds of people came from the USA searching for places connected to the stories. The statue will bring a whole new dimension."
Crowborough historian Mr Tuffley, of Montargis Way, has been quoted £50,000 to create a memorial by renowned sculptor Carl Payne.
Mr Payne is currently creating a statue of British boxing legend and former Hildenborough resident Sir Henry Cooper which, when completed, is set to be located in London.
Conan Doyle lived at Windlesham Manor, near Crowborough Beacon Golf Club, for 23 years until his death in 1930 and a statue of him, which cost £48,000, stands outside Crowborough Cross.
The new statue would be placed at the junction of Croft Road and The Broadway.
Lizzie Brind is the owner of Hair Gallery, in The Broadway.
She said: "The statue would have a positive effect on the town promoting tourism and increasing footfall in the High Street. It also could be an excellent marketing tool."
Dean Harding-Dempster, owner of the Old Fire Station Cafe, said it was a good idea and cited Hartfield, which although small attracts tourists because of Winnie the Pooh.
He said: "We could be on that tourist circuit. Any kind of promotion in terms of our history, certainly in respect of Sherlock Holmes, is a good idea.
"What is there in Crowborough which would bring people in at the moment?"
People can make donations to the newly formed Sherlock Holmes Trust Fund at any branch of Lloyd's Bank.