LIVERPOOL'S 807th birthday is being celebrated with the announcement that a new Liver Bird - The Spirit of Liverpool - is to appear in the city.
The sculpture has been designed by Wirral’s Rick Myers – fundraising manager at Wirral Autistic Society.
Work has started on a 6ft modern version of the historic bird which will welcome millions of commuters and tourists at the entrance to Merseyrail's Liverpool Central Station.
Liver Birds Inc have been planning the project for a number of years and are delighted to have received initial funding from the Liverpool Commercial District Partnership.
The Liverpool Central Station bird will be dedicated to the memory of the late Paul Rice, former Chief Executive of Liverpool's Commercial District Partnership.
Bill Addy, Chief Executive of the Commercial District BID, said: “It is fantastic to see that Paul, who did so much to improve and promote Liverpool, is to be remembered at a high profile city centre location in such a striking fashion.
“The fact that it's the emblem of the city and his beloved football club – his two great passions – is a fitting tribute.”
Hundreds of smaller Spirit of Liverpool birds have already been sold throughout the UK and around the world.
Rick said: “The bird celebrates the new Liverpool and recognises the massive number of 'firsts' that have been achieved here over the years, arguably more than any other city in the world.”
Former Echo journalist, Arthur Johnson, who is also a director of Liver Birds Inc, said: “The Spirit of Liverpool has proved a huge hit particularly with ex-pat Scousers. We expect the 6ft bird to be a popular photo spot for tourists, football fans and shoppers.
“A children's book about the history of the bird, written and illustrated by Rick Myers, has been published along with a DVD of the story. A special Liver Bird song has even been recorded.
“Liver Birds Inc have teamed up with Claire House with support from Liverpool BID Company to create a special Spirit of Liverpool trail of birds about 2ft high.
Next year they will be available for businesses or individuals to buy and display with a donation from every sale going to Claire House.