Video: Over £500 raised in a day to create a statue of Gerald the York Minster cat

Gerald the York Minster cat. Photograph: Lewis Outing
20 Sep 2020 @ 7.11 pm
| News

A crowdfunding page, started to commission a statue in memory of one of the two cats associated with York Minster, has raised its first £500 just a day after it was launched.

Gerald died last week, leaving behind a brother called Donald.

It wasn’t clear what caused his death, but the bengal was found in the early hours near the Minster.

Now a campaign has been launched to create a sculpture of Gerald that can be included in York’s cat trail.

Already it has seen donations of £580.

YorkMix has also been given a video clip of Gerald and David Dunning has been speaking to the woman behind the page.

Gerald. Photograph: York Minster Cats on Instagram

The crowdfunder page says: “Gerald was an incredibly special cat who spent the later three years of his life happily patrolling the cobbled streets and gardens surrounding York Minster.

“He had a very comfy bed and food at home but his independent character meant that for much of his days and nights he was out. 

“Gerald became well known throughout York and in fact the world, appearing in selfies and posts all over social media.

“He wasn’t fame crazy, it was merely a resulting side effect of his friendly nature and curiosity to meet and sit with people of all backgrounds.”

A lasting tribute

A familiar face: Gerald, the York Minster cat

Gerald “helped people through depression, he appeared in the background of wedding photos and inspired non-cat people to reconsider!” the crowdfunder continued. 

“His tragic and untimely death was a feature in the news both locally and nationally; a sign of his special and charming qualities and of the impact he had on hundreds of people.”

The plan is to commemorate Gerald by commissioning a local sculptor to create a “lasting sculptural tribute” which will be a feature within York’s unique cat trail. 

Both the location and artist are yet to be decided.

The fundraiser ends with a thank you “on behalf of Donald (Gerald’s Bengal Brother), his family (Justine, Sam, Elise), friends & fans”.

UPDATE

On Monday night (21 September) Louise Rowley, a friend of Gerald’s owner Justine, told YorkMix that the crowd funder had gone straight past the first target and they would be able to start to process of commissioning a statue.

She said that she wanted to thank everyone who had helped get them past the first stage. More details will be announced soon about the next steps.