Hartlepool unveils lasting tribute to film legends Sir Ridley and Tony Scott

Published Monday, 25th June 2018

A NEW sculpture celebrating legendary Hollywood film director brothers Sir Ridley and Tony Scott and their links with Hartlepool has been unveiled in the town.

They both studied at West Hartlepool College of Art and went on to earn worldwide fame – Sir Ridley with films including Alien, Blade Runner and Gladiator and Tony with films such as Top Gun, Crimson Tide and Enemy Of The State. They received many accolades for their contribution to the film industry, including a knighthood for Sir Ridley from the Queen in 2003.

The new lifesize sculpture of ‘Boy and Bicycle’ – located beside the railway station in the transport interchange at the top of Church Street - recalls Sir Ridley’s first film, a black and white short which he shot in Hartlepool in 1962.

It represents the scene in the film where the boy – played by Tony Scott – cycles down Church Street with Christ Church in the background. Sadly, Tony passed away in 2012 and the sculpture is dedicated to his memory.

Boy and Bicycle

Councillor Christopher Akers-Belcher, Councillor Kevin Cranney and Bob Hollywood beside 'Boy and Bicycle'

The new landmark was commissioned by Hartlepool Borough Council using funding from the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund. Created by specialist metalworker and sculptor Bob Hollywood, it incorporates weathering steel material to reflect the industrial heritage of the town.

The unveiling was performed by Councillor Kevin Cranney, Chair of the Council’s Regeneration Services Committee, and the Leader of the Council Councillor Christopher Akers-Belcher.

Councillor Cranney said: “Sir Ridley and his brother Tony have brought great credit to Hartlepool, where they spent some of their formative years, and in its location next to the railway station ‘Boy and Bicycle’ will be seen and enjoyed by the many people who travel to and from the town.

“As well as honouring these two leading figures in the creative industries, the sculpture also echoes the major work which we are currently carrying out to revitalise the Church Street area and transform it into a thriving innovation and skills quarter.”

Bob Hollywood added: “I was thrilled to be approached by this forward-thinking council to produce a sculpture representing two artists in a field which I truly admire and whose work has brought great honour to the town where they studied.

“The project allowed me to research the work of Sir Ridley and Tony and the relationship between them. It reminded me very much of the relationship I have with my own brother and allowed me to bring a very personal touch to the piece.

“Working with the Council has been a great experience as it came with some very clear and creative ideas which formed the foundation of the sculpture. It has been a pleasure to work with such a creative and open-minded team.”

Coastal Communities Minister Jake Berry said: “This striking sculpture commemorates Hartlepool’s historic links with two Hollywood icons.

“I’m proud that the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund is supporting seaside towns like Hartlepool celebrate their rich history and culture while investing in the local areas to boost tourism and create new economic opportunities.”