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Public Statues and Sculpture Association

Paul Bainbridge (b. 1943)

Sculptor. Born in Whitehaven, Cumbria, he later lived in nearby Egremont. He attended Carlisle College of Art and subsequently Hornsey College of Art, London. For 12 years a freelance portrait sculptor at Madame Tussaud’s, he modelled numerous heads including Anthony Hopkins, Sean Connery, Steven Spielberg and Prince Edward. His full-length figure of the astronomer Patrick Moore (1992) is on long-term loan from Madame Tussaud’s to the South Downs Planetarium & Science Centre, Chichester, West Sussex. Bainbridge was, for many years, involved in art education, teaching at Hadham Hall School, near Bishop’s Stortford, and on the ‘Open Studies’ course at the University of Hertfordshire. In 1993 he was elected a member of the Royal Society of British Sculptors. Bainbridge has described Georgia O’Keefe, Eric Gill and Aristide Maillol as having an ‘oblique influence’ on his work. Much of his sculpture is in private collections, but publicly sited examples include River (2002), Charringtons House (East Herts Council), The Causeway, Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire; Horn of Egremont (2006) Bookwell, Egremont, Cumbria; Egremont Gurner (2009), Castle Villas, Egremont, Cumbria; and Medallion of Lord Nelson, Royal Naval Museum, Portsmouth. His portrait heads of the fell runner Joss Naylor (2008) and popular local park warden Michael Little (2009) are in The Beacon Museum, Whitehaven, Cumbria. He has said of his sculpture: ‘I have no message, political or otherwise, to disseminate. I am simply expressing my interest, delight and pleasure in the things I see around me.’

Principal source: Paul Bainbridge, email to David A. Cross, 9 June 2015.

Bibliography: Paul Bainbridge Sculptor – Biography; D.A. Cross, Public Sculpture of Lancashire and Cumbria, Liverpool, 2017, pp. xx, 162–63; Whitehaven News: (i) 27 September 2007; (ii) 21 February 2008; (iii) 21 August 2008; (iv) 23 July 2009.

David A. Cross, 2017; updated, Terry Cavanagh, March 2024