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Conservationists object to George Michael statue

A petition to build a statue of the former Wham! star has been met by opposition from the local Highgate conservationist society.

FILE: Late British singer George Michael. Picture: AFP.

LONDON - A statue outside the home of the late George Michael has been met by objections from conservationists.

The former Wham! star was found dead in his home in Goring-on-Thames, England, last Christmas Day and since his death fans have petitioned to have a statue erected near his property in Highgate, London, north London, where his boyfriend Fadi Fawaz still lives.

However, despite the petition having attracted thousands of signatures, the Highgate Society have objected to a statue on the grounds that it is too expensive.

Michael Hammerson, Highgate Society’s policy and projects spokesman, told the Daily Mail newspaper: “Statues aren’t cheap - a blue plaque might be much more appropriate. A statue doesn’t achieve much. I’m sure they could come up with all sorts of ideas for something with public benefit that they could name after George Michael: an improvement to playgrounds, or a local arts centre.”

Since his shock passing at the age of 53, Susan Rose, chair of Highgate Conservation Area advisory committee, has said she thinks a statue would be a “great” tribute to the Outside singer.

She said: “I think a statue would be great. A lot of people in Highgate would like a permanent memorial rather than mounds of dead flowers.

“He was a wonderful guy for Highgate. He gave a lot of money very quietly to good causes as well as the Christmas lights in the square.

“Why not have both: a statue in the garden and a plaque on the house?”

The petition to build a commemorative statue has even been back by the local councillor of Highgate village.

Liz Morris, the local Liberal Democrat councillor, said: “Many Highgate residents have told me they would support a memorial in the village for George Michael.”

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