ALVIN STARDUST - Family launch statue campaign for iconic Mansfield star

The family of the late Mansfield rocker Alvin Stardust are appealing for donations to help build a permanent memorial to him in the town.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 19th October 2016, 10:04 am
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 6:03 pm

The musician passed away two years ago this week, and his relations feel the time is right to re-launch a campaign to erect a statue in his honour.

Around £1,100 has been raised so far, donated by fans, but thousands more is needed if they have any hope of turning the idea into a reality.

Jane Wood, whose father is Alvin’s cousin, said: “We talked about this after his funeral two years ago and everyone thought it was a great idea.

“I followed it up and took on the reins, but did not know how difficult it would be.

“There have been donations from Alvin’s fan club and that is in the bank, but it’s come to a stop.”

Jane, 36, has even got a sculptor on board and has been through the choices of what could be possible.

However, the size and materials used will depend on the amount of money raised.

David Price and daughter Jane Wood with memorabilia of Alvin Stardust.

Finally, a suitable location needs to be earmarked, although Mansfield Museum on Leeming Street has been mooted.

“We have even chosen the stance of Alvin, a very iconic look that he had,” added Jane. It’s all designed, it now just needs putting into material.”

Alvin Stardust, whose real name Bernard Jewry, started out in the music business in the 1960s - first recording as Shane Fenton - but became a huge star on the back of the 1970s glam rock craze, scoring hits with tracks including ‘My Coo Ca Choo’ and ‘Jealous Mind’.

Born in Muswell Hill, in London, in 1942, he moved to Mansfield where his mother ran a boarding house frequented by musicians and entertainers appearing locally.

As a young boy and attended what is now the Southwell Minster School.

He made his stage debut in pantomime at the age of four, and first emerged in the early 1960s, before disappearing from the charts for more than a decade.

David Price and daughter Jane Wood with memorabilia of Alvin Stardust.

Re-emerging in the early 1970s as Alvin Stardust, he landed 11 Top 40 hits, including a number one.

He was unable to recreate the success he previously enjoyed during the 1980s and 1990s, but had regular TV appearances.

After a short battle against prostate cancer, he died on October 23, 2014, aged 72.

Jane’s father, David Perry, is Alvin’s cousin and said a statue would be a fitting legacy to the star, given that many of his earlier performances were in the Mansfield area.

David, who lives at Forest Town, is backing his daughter’s campaign.

He said: “He was Mansfield’s biggest star, and you hear about all these celebrities having statues being put up in other towns, well Mansfield needs one.

“He was fantastic and everybody would tell you that - there are so many people out there who are still big fans.

“He was 10 years older than me and he introduced me to rock ‘n’ roll when I used to call round to his house on Clifton Place, off West Hill Drive.

“When he became famous he used to get us into the best places and book hotel rooms for us. He would always look after his friends and family.”

Meanwhile, Mansfield Museum has offered the statue a permanent home at its Leeming Street address.

Jodie Henshaw, development officer said: “He is a big part of Mansfield’s history and we are happy that he would be remembered like this. He visited here as a child and became a great supporter of the museum, he was very good to us to so we’re supporting this.”

Anyone wishing to donate can contact Jane Wood via email - [email protected] Alternatively, go to the Alvin Stardust Memorial Sculpture Fund on Facebook.

PICTURED, from top, Alvin on stage during his later years, the pose that Alvin’s family hope will be created in statue form, and David Price and daughter Jane Wood with memorabilia of Alvin Stardust