War Horse screening supports Seaham soldier sculpture campaign

CARNIVAL CROWD: Seaham's streets packed during a previous celebration.
CARNIVAL CROWD: Seaham's streets packed during a previous celebration.
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A TOWN in the middle of a campaign to keep a First World War-themed sculpture will show a film based on the conflict as part its annual carnival.

Blockbuster War Horse, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, will be screened by Seaham Town Council this weekend.

It was chosen to reflect the support for the Eleven ‘O’ One sculpture, by Ray Lonsdale, in Green Terrace, and the Mission 1101 campaign set up by people to keep it in place.

The soldier artwork, made from corten steel and nicknamed Tommy by its supporters, represents a serviceman in the moments after peace was declared in 1918.

The artist, from South Hetton, also wanted it to reflect the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder many suffered after the experiencing the horrors of conflict.

The carnival starts tonight, with local performers launching the entertainment at 5pm, followed by screenings of Pitch Perfect at 6pm, then Pretty Woman on Terrace Green. On Saturday, entertainment by groups from the area will start at noon, with Monster University shown at 2pm, Frozen at 4pm and War Horse at 6pm.

UK Rock Legends, a group which features Animals Martin Bland and Stevie Hutch, Mad Dog from the John Miles Band and Graham Bell from Eric Bell’s Thin Lizzy, will take to the stage at 8.30pm.

The carnival itself will kick off on Sunday at 11am, with a host of live acts.

Paul Fletcher, deputy town clerk of the council, said: “We will be showing War Horse, which will be really poignant and comes after the film was voted by demand.

“The film is different to the others being shown and it will be special because of Tommy on the Terrace Green.”