Sculpture tells the Ballad of Sophia at Treadmills site

The Ballad of Sophia has arrived in Northallerton to take centre stage at the town’s Treadmills development.

The sculpture has been created for the town’s multi-million-pound development by world-renowned sculptor, Ray Lonsdale.

Treadmills has been created on the site of the town's former prison and includes retail, business, leisure and education.

The Ballad of Sophia Sculpture in Northallerton

The Ballad of Sophia Sculpture in Northallerton

The eight-foot-high steel sculpture depicts Sophia Constable, the youngest female inmate ever incarcerated in Northallerton’s former prison, with a warden. Sophia was jailed at the age of 11 for stealing a loaf of bread.

The sculpture will be the focal point for Treadmills and will be visible from the town’s High Street. Costing £85,000, the statue was funded by North Yorkshire Council and Historic England’s cultural programme as part of the Northallerton High Street Heritage Action Zone.

Mr Lonsdale has been responsible for a series of striking artworks across the North of England, including Tommy, a sculpture of a war-weary soldier that was installed on the promenade at Seaham harbour in 2014.

The Ballad of Sophia

The Ballad of Sophia

The Treadmills scheme has been delivered by the Central Northallerton Development Company Ltd (CNDCL), a joint venture between North Yorkshire Council and a leading Yorkshire developer, the Wykeland Group.

The development features an Everyman cinema, which opened in May, as well as the digital innovation centre C4DI (Centre for Digital Innovation), Lidl and Iceland stores, a pilates studio, a kitchen showroom, restaurants and a bistro and the educational facility Campus@Northallerton (C@N).

The development has also been supported by the York and North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership, which secured investment of £1.8 million from the Government’s Local Growth Fund for the redevelopment and fit-out of C4DI.

A further £725,000 was secured from the Government’s Getting Building Fund for C@N – the first further and higher education facility in the area with two education providers, the University of Sunderland and York College.