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16th September 1970: British rock band Led Zeppelin collect their geode awards after being voted top British group in the Melody Maker Pop Poll in London. From left to right, they are Jimmy Page, Robert Plant (who also won the Best British Singer award), and John Bonham. (Photo by Roger Jackson/Central Press/Getty Images)

Led Zeppelin‘s late drummer John Bonham will be honored with a new bronze statue that’s going to be placed in his hometown of Redditch, England. 

The unveiling is slated to take place on or around what would have been Bonham’s 70th birthday next May 31 and is the result of a long campaign by his sister Deborah Bonham, herself a rock singer.

Deborah recently told the BBC that, “We just got planning permission, so I’m absolutely thrilled. We’re going to have a John Bonham memorial. Brilliant!”

Sculptor Mark Richards has been commissioned to make the statue, with most of the funds coming from private donations to the John Bonham Memorial Fund, which was established during 2013. The memorial will be nearly six feet high and 16 feet wide and weigh more than 5,500 pounds; A wheelchair-accessible path will be placed around it to give fans 360-degree viewing access.

Bonham died on September 25, 1980 at the age of 32 after a day of heavy drinking before and during Led Zeppelin rehearsals.

 

Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.