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You are in: Suffolk > People > St Edmund > The new face of St Edmund

The new face of St Edmund

A fresh-faced St Edmund is bound by ropes, resigned to his impending death but still able to hold his head high.

St Edmund statue by Lenny Goff

St Edmund statue by Lenny Goff

That's the image of Suffolk's Patron Saint as seen in a new sculpture at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds.

Straight after a dedication service for the new icon, the congregation flocked to congratulate sculptor Lenny Goff and to take a closer look at his work.

Depicted in the hours before his death, bound in leather straps and awaiting execution, the statue shows Edmund in a younger light than the bearded versions more commonly found in the cathedral.

"It's absolutely flattering that people have shown so much interest to something which is really bread and butter to me," Lenny said of the statue which took 960 hours of work from concept to finish.

Lenny, who drew inspiration from one of his teenage grandsons for St Edmund's features, believes the icon is still relevant in today's society.

Reverend Neil Collings and Lenny Goff

Reverend Neil Collings and Lenny Goff

"It's a moment just before the poor wretched man was shot to death by a thousand arrows, and if you look a round the world today, there's very little difference between that and some of the atrocities you see.

"I think the human race has learned very little from things like this."

The image, made from a single block of limewood, isn't the only piece of Lenny's in the cathedral. He's got two other sculptures to his name including the Madonna and Child in the Lady Chapel.

The St Edmund statue was paid for by the Friends of St Edmundsbury Cathedral.

last updated: 26/06/2008 at 11:50
created: 20/11/2007

Have Your Say

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Jonathan Crane
What a beautiful statue of St Edmund! I'm very impressed with it, the countenance of the face has such dignity and nobleness and it really does look like the face of a young English king. I very much like the idea of Saint Edmund being the new patron saint of England, at least he has some connection with our nation as he actually lived here and died for his people. I think he's the perfect English saint. I might start praying to Saint Edmund and asking him to help England, it's high-time that the English people stood up for what they believe and re-instated some English culture and values. The restoration of Saint Edmund as England's patron saint could start a new wave of English nationalism and I would be the first to support it.

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