Rugby player gargoyle installed on Gloucester Cathedral

Glaaaawster gargoyle
Image caption The kneeling player, clutching a ball, represents the rugby proud city of Gloucester

A new gargoyle of a rugby player with a broken nose and cauliflower ears has been installed on the roof of Gloucester Cathedral.

It is the first of six new figures being placed on the north side, as part of a £530,000 restoration scheme.

The 3ft (1m) tall kneeling player is clutching a ball and has been “built to last hundreds of years”.

It will be joined by five other gargoyles including a cheese-roller, a jockey and a suffragette.

The six new stone gargoyles are being installed to protect one of the oldest parts of the cathedral, by channelling rain water from the roof away from the side of the building.

Image caption The new stone gargoyles are being installed to protect one of the oldest parts of the building
Image caption Designed by the cathedral’s master mason, Pascal Mychalysin, it took seven weeks to carve

The new gargoyles – only the second to be installed in “living history” according to the cathedral – have been designed to represent the county’s six districts.

A cheese-chaser is the Tewkesbury gargoyle, marking the death-defying cheese-rolling races down Cooper’s Hill.

Cheltenham is represented by a tearful jockey grasping the Gold Cup, while the gargoyle inspired by suffragette Annie Kenney pays tribute to the forgotten women of the Stroud mills.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The new gargoyles are only the second to be installed in “living history” according to the cathedral

The rugby player gargoyle – called Glaaaawster – was the “only choice” for the city, the cathedral said.

It has been lifted into position on the roof overlooking Gloucester Rugby Club’s Kingsholm ground.

The Very Reverend Stephen Lake, Dean of Gloucester, said: “Since 1891, Gloucester Rugby Club has played its home matches at Kingsholm Stadium.

“With the other hallowed ground just a stone’s throw away from the cathedral, it seemed only fitting that Glaaaawster should pay tribute to this much-loved sport.”

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