South West Wales

Henry VII statue 'needed' at Pembrokeshire castle

Henry VII who was born at Pembroke Castle
King Henry VII, father of Henry VIII and grandfather of Elizabeth I, was born and raised at Pembroke Castle

Calls from a former tour guide for a statue to Henry VII at the castle where he was born are being backed by the area's new MP.

Melanie Phillips has been campaigning for the monument at Pembroke Castle where she once worked.

The king, who founded the Tudor dynasty, was born in the castle in 1457 and lived there until he was 11.

Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire MP Simon Hart said he would help to find funding for the statue.

Ms Phillips said she had been trying for several years to get the project off the ground.

"There's a little plaque by a wooden seat outside and inside the castle there is another plaque in the room where he was born, but that's it," she said.

"The founder of the Tudor dynasty was born here but there's no statue at all. When I would show tourists around they could not believe it."

She said a site for the statue outside the castle, south of Pembroke town centre, had been agreed but funding had so far proved a problem.

"Ideally what we really need is a benefactor. In these times you cannot expect public funding," added Ms Phillips.

Henry was born in the castle on 28 January 1457, two months after his father Edmund Tudor died.

He was raised by his uncle Jasper Tudor who fled with Henry to France after the Lancastrian defeat in 1471.

In 1483 Henry became the leading Lancastrian claimant to the English throne and two years later landed at Milford Haven, killed Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth and was crowned king.

Mr Hart said: "I think Mel's idea is a great one and it would be wonderful for the tourist trade in the town to make more of the Henry VII link.

"I am now helping her to explore avenues of funding and to drum up support for the scheme."

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