Lily Parr, an English professional women's association football player has become the first female footballer to be honoured with a statue. The life-sized bronze sculpture by Hannah Stewart will be revealed next month at the National Football Museum in the United Kingdom. Lily played football a century ago when women generally did not play the game. She was just 14 when she made 108 goals in her first season. Lily was known for her powerful shots when compared to her peers. She finished her career twenty goals short of 1000.
The statue in her name was commissioned by Mars and Brand Director Gemma Buggins who said, "Lily Parr was the heroine of her time in the sporting world. It's an honour to be able to recognise her and commemorate the inspirational woman that she was. With England's Lionesses preparing for this summer's tournament, we hope the unveiling of the first ever female footballer statue spurs them on and gives them the motivation to go all the way!"
Here is the sculpture of Lily Parr:
The first-ever statue of the female footballer Lily Parr will be unveiled next month! Parr was an outside left winger and scored over 980 goals in her 32-year career! ⚽🙌Hannah Stewart will be creating the statue ahead of this summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in France! pic.twitter.com/yBBBozfSBY
— The Female Lead (@the_female_lead) May 15, 2019
Lily Parr practising javelin as part of her training with Preston Ladies football team in 1938
Watch the video below:
While women were initially not allowed to play football in the United Kingdom, they did not have much of a choice after men were increasingly recruited during World War I. And during that period arose Lily Parr, a 6-feet0tall left winger who played for Dick, Kerr's Ladies team that was founded in 1917 in Preston, Lancashire. In 2002, she was the only woman to be included into the English Football Hall of Fame at the National Football Museum.
Marzena Bogdanowicz, Head of Commercial and Marketing, Women's Football at The FA said was quoted as saying, "Women's football is in a very strong place today with the England team helping us to drive participation and interest at every level. We have come a long way since Lily Parr's days and she deserves recognition as a true pioneer of the sport. Lily Parr was the first woman to enter the Football Hall of Fame, an iconic achievement in itself, so it's only fitting that she takes her place alongside other football legends and becomes the first woman to be celebrated with a statue in her honour."