Bronze Frank Sidebottom statue revealed
A bronze statue of comedy character Frank Sidebottom has been revealed at a Czech Republic foundry ahead of its installation in his home village.
The statue pays tribute to the character, who was the alter-ego of musician and comedian Chris Sievey.
Sievey, who played Sidebottom wearing an oversized papier-mache head, died of cancer in 2010 aged 54.
The statue, paid for by donations from fans, will be installed in Timperley, Greater Manchester in the autumn.
Neil Taylor, chair of the Frank Sidebottom Statue appeal, said the process of erecting it was "approaching the final stage".
"The body needs polishing off and the head needs painting - we're hoping that will take place in the next couple of weeks.
"The statue will then be shipped over to Timperley, when we'll be bringing Frank home."
The appeal, launched shortly after Sievey's death, sought to raise £60,000 to create and install the life-size statue.Timperley sunset
Mr Taylor said about £1,500 was still needed to pay for the statue's foundations, erection costs and a memorial plaque.
Sievey set his character's life in the village, where he lived himself, and, as Frank, hosted tours of the area for fans.
He often referenced Timperley in his TV and music work, notably on his 1987 release, The Timperley EP, which featured a version of The Kinks' 1967 song Waterloo Sunset with altered lyrics that referred extensively to the Trafford village.
Mr Taylor said the installation of the statue would mean that "Frank will gaze on the Timperley sunset forever".
Although best known for Frank Sidebottom, Sievey also had success in the late 1970s with his punk band The Freshies, who had a hit with I'm In Love With The Girl On The Manchester Virgin Megastore Checkout Desk.
His TV fame peaked in the early 1990s with his own series Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show.