Charles Dickens’ first statue will be unveiled in the city where he was born, defying wishes in his will for one not to be created.
The £118,000 monument was commissioned by the Dickens Fellowship and will be in Portsmouth, thanks to an anonymous benefactor who donated the last £25,000 needed.
It is the second time his wishes have been ignored. He had asked to be buried at Rochester Cathedral in an inexpensive and private ceremony but was laid to rest in the Poets’ Corner at Westminster Abbey.
He died in 1870 after suffering a stroke.
He had asked that no memorial be erected in his honour yet a life-sized bronze statue was cast in 1891 and stands in Philadelphia.
The Dickens Fellowship, which is backed by members of the late writer’s family, said it would “celebrate his ferociously creative, colourful and monumental life.”