PROGRESS is being made on a statue which will commemorate the thousands of children who arrived in Harwich from Europe while fleeing from the Nazis.

Sculpted by award-winning Essex artist Ian Wolter, the statue is set to be unveiled on the Harwich quayside this autumn.

Harwich was the main point of entry for most of the 10,000 children who came to Britain as part of the Kindertransport.

The first refugees arrived by ferry in December 1938. Some continued their journey to London, while others went to holiday camps in the Harwich area.

The life-size sculpture will now depict five children descending from a ship’s gangplank with moving quotes which will be carved into the bronze.

To ensure the statue was realistic, Wolter used live models, two of which are of Jewish descent and living in East Anglia.

Gazette: Sculptor Ian Wolter with Harwich Mayor Ivan HendersonSculptor Ian Wolter with Harwich Mayor Ivan Henderson

The statue is currently being bronzed and will be assembled on the quay.

Harwich mayor Ivan Henderson visited the Sculpture Service Foundry in Manningtree to see how Mr Wolter's work is coming together.

He said: “I was delighted to visit the Sculpture Services Foundry to view the progress of this significant piece of history which will be unveiled later this year.

" I believe this memorial will add to Harwich’s rich history as visitors to the quayside will be able to visualise and connect with this historical event.

"We are pleased to be working with the Harwich Kinder Memorial Trust to support this initiative and welcome this piece of modern history to Harwich.”

Existing memorials currently trace the journey of the children from Berlin, Vienna, Prague, Gdańsk, Hamburg to the Hook of Holland before reaching Liverpool Street Station.

Harwich is missing from this journey which is why the statue will serve as a reminder to the past.

Earlier this year, two native oak trees were planted in Jubilee Park in Parkeston and Cliff Park in Dovercourt in recognition of the 10,000 children who arrived in Harwich.