Memorial to actor Peter Cushing to be restored

Actor Peter Cushing's memorial bench sits in Whitstable

Restoration work on Star Wars actor Peter Cushing’s memorial bench in Whitstable is about to start.

The bench has been located at Cushing’s View on the seafront behind Keam’s Yard car park since 1990.

Cushing – who appeared Hammer horror films and the original Star Wars movie – was originally from Surrey, but spent his later life living in Whitstable.

Canterbury City Council has commissioned artist Will Glanfield to carry out the project. He originally made the seat in 1990 and will be restoring it using original Jarrah timber.

A few weeks ago, a member of the public contacted the council to say the bench’s plaque had gone missing.

The Peter Cushing memorial bench

The council had begun making arrangements for a replacement when Cushing’s former personal assistant, Joyce Broughton, informed it that the original plaque had been handed into Whitstable Museum.

Screws had apparently rusted and the plaque had become loose, prompting a member of the public to remove it and hand it in. 

The bench will be removed in the next week with repairs due to take about a month.

Cllr Neil Baker, the council’s community chairman, said: “We know how important Peter Cushing’s bench is to the people of Whitstable.

“The last time it was removed for repairs, there were concerns it had been taken away forever, so we want to be clear this is only temporary and that it will be back in a little while, looking better than ever.

“It’s particularly good that we’re using original artist Will Glanfield for this project. He will treat the bench with the tender loving care it deserves and we know he’s going to do a great job.”

Cushing was the sinister Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars: A New Hope as well as more than 100 other films.


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