Historic lion’s head plinth finds a permanent home in Wembley

Julian Tollast, head of masterplanning and design at Quintain (left) poses by the historical plinth

Julian Tollast, head of masterplanning and design at Quintain (left) poses by the historical plinth with Cllr Muhammed Butt - Credit: Archant

A historic lion’s head memento that was saved from the scrapheap last year has been unveiled in Wembley to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the British Empire Exhibition (BEE).

The plinth formed a part of the Palace of Industry, which hosted the BEE, formerly in Fulton Road, before it was reduced to rubble in March 2013 by Quintain, the company behind the current Wembley Park developments, to make way for a temporary car park.

The lion was the symbol for the exhibition which to showcased the best industrial and natural resources the British Empire had to offer - attracting around 27 million visitors to Wembley in 1924 and 1925.

The showpiece was preserved thanks to the efforts of Philip Grant of the Wembley History Society (WHS) who campaigned for it to be put on permanent public display.

The statue was co-funded by the council, WHS, community group the Exhibition Study Group and Quintain.

He said: “The British Empire Exhibition is an event that has brought people to Wembley from around the world 90 years ago ‘to get to know one another better’, and I hope that people in Wembley today from around the world, whether residents or visitors, will enjoy this piece of our heritage from the British Empire Exhibition, and will use the opportunity when they come to see it ‘to get to know one another better.”

Councillor Muhammed Butt, leader of the Brent Council said: “We’re really excited to have this piece of local history carefully preserved and on display for everyone to enjoy.

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