Manual Ref* SUseGT002 Show 3 images 1004

Shepherd and his flock

County Suffolk   District Council St Edmunsbury Borough Council 
Civil Parish or equivalent Great Thurlow  Town/Village* Great Thurlow 
Road Bury Road 
Precise Location In All Saints church 
OS Grid Ref TL680490  Postcode CB9 
Previous location(s)  
Setting South side of aisle, before before chancel arch.  Access Public 
Artist/Maker Role Qualifier
Dame Elisabeth Frink  Sculptor(s)   

Commissioned by

Presented by daughters of Ronald Vestey 

Design & Constrn period

1983, one of a series of eight 

Date of installing


Exact date of unveiling



Abstract Animal Architectural
Commercial Commemorative Composite
Free Functional Funerary
Heraldic Military Natural
Non-Commemorative Performance Portable
Religious Roadside, Wayside Sculptural
Temporary, Mobile Other  

Object Type

Building Clock Tower Architectural
Coat of Arms Cross Fountain
Landscape Marker Medallion
Mural Panel Readymade
Relief Shaft Sculpture
Statue Street Furniture War Memorial
Other Object Sub Type: Small model

Subject Type

Allegorical Mythological Pictorial
Figurative Non-figurative Portrait
Still-life Symbolic Other

Subject Sub Type

Bust Equestrian Full-length
Group Head Reclining
Seated Standing Torso
Part Material Dimension
Maquette  Bronze  40 cm wide 

Work is

Extant Not Sited Lost


Great Thurlow Parochial Church Council 

Listing status

Grade I Grade II* Grade II Don't Know Not Listed

Surface Condition

Corrosion, Deterioration Accretions
Bird Guano Abrasions, cracks, splits
Biological growth Spalling, crumbling
Metallic staining Previous treatments

Structural Condition

Armature exposed Broken or missing parts
Replaced parts Loose elements
Cracks, splits, breaks, holes Spalling, crumbling
Water collection Other


Graffiti Structural damage Surface Damage

Overall condition

Good Fair Poor


No Known Risk At Risk Immediate
Inscriptions Plaque inscribed: In memory of Ronald Vestey. This sculpture by Dame Elizabeth Frink. Given by his three daughters 1990. 

Description (physical)

Set high up this is the beautifully crafted small variant (cat. 279) on the Shepherd and his Flock of 1975 (Cat. 215) set in Paternoster Square, and replaced when rebuilding finished in 2003. It differs in the bolder handling of the surfaces, the sheep, and the shepherd’s movement and the crook (cut down at Paternoster Square) and here in his right hand. 

Description (iconographical)

Between 1961 and 1967 the block between St Paul's Churchyard and Newgate Street was redeveloped according to a scheme by William Graham Holford. The new Paternoster Square soon became unpopular, and (in the eyes of many) its grim presence immediately north of one of the capital's prime tourist attractions was seen as an embarrassment. Robert Finch, the Lord Mayor of London, wrote in The Guardian in 2004, "The old Paternoster Square was typical: ghastly, monolithic constructions without definition or character". In 1996 a masterplan by William Whitfield was adopted and put into action over the following years. By October 2003 the redeveloped Paternoster square was complete, with buildings by Whitfield's firm and several others, and Frink's Shepherd and his flock Ronald Vestey (1898-1987) was the son of Sir Edmund Hoyle Vestey (1866-1953), the founder, together with his older brother William, first baron Vestey(1859-1940). of the Vestey industrial and food importing empire. Ronald Vestey took over running the company on the death of his father. Vestey's family fortune stemmed from their innovation in establishing cold stores for the import of frozen meat from the Americas at the beginning of the twentieth century, followed by a shipping fleet, the Blue Line. They had extensive holdings in Argentina where they reared cattle, and completed the chain with Dewhurst butchers shops, for long a dominant force in British retailing. They applied the same inventiveness to their relations with the British taxman, in 1978, for instance, the Dewhurst chain paid £10 tax on a profit of more than £2.3m.  


Date taken:  15/2/2010
Date logged: 

Photographed by:
Sarah Cocke

On Site Inspection

Date:  15/2/2010

Inspected by:
Richard Cocke

Sources and References

Elisabeth Frink, Catalogue raisonné‚ Salisbury, 1984; Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, from the earliest times to the year 2000, eds Matthew, H.C.G. and Harrison, B., Oxford, 2004, 56, 394-5 


Date entered:  18/2/2010

Data inputter:
Richard Cocke