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Alan showing his mettle with sculpture of soldier

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Everything from an old filing cabinet to coat-hangers and a garden gate have been used to help create this detailed sculpture of a German soldier.

Amateur metal worker Alan Rosak has spent just over a year bashing, molding and welding hundreds of bits of metal together to create the life-size model.

The 52-year-old, from Braunstone, Leicester, said: "I just enjoy looking out for bits of metal and then being creative.

"I just like a challenge. Some people do crosswords, so I suppose this is my alternative.

"You wouldn't believe what's in it – a filing cabinet, a lot of coat-hangers, the legs off office furniture and there is a gas fire surround.

"I used car sockets and car wheel bearings for the binoculars, a toilet roll holder, some gate hinges, a kitchen bin and bits of wood, too.

"The only two things I didn't make are the gas mask on his back and the little water bottle."

Alan and his friends and family pick up bits of metal from car boot sales.

He started with the head and then made the rest of the body, flattening the metal before stripping it of paint and welding the parts together. He then varnished and lacquered the whole sculpture.

"I don't want to offend anyone with it or anything because it is a German soldier," Alan said.

"I didn't make it because of that. I just wanted a challenge, with lots of equipment to make for the soldier, and I'm interested in military history – that's all.

"I've made an American GI before, but that was just a bust, and I'm hoping to do something for the 70th anniversary of D-Day next year.

"Maybe a British soldier, maybe Montgomery."

Alan first became interested in metal work at school, and in the late 1980s, when he was working, took welding classes in the evening.

He began making sculptures about 13 years ago, and has created a butterfly, a fish and a flamingo.

"I would love it if people were able to see my soldier because I think I've definitely come on with my sculptures and have got better over the years, but I'm not sure where I would display it," he said.

"At the moment, it's just standing in my house."

A spokesman for Leicester City Council said the sculpture could go on public display if Alan entered the city's Open Art competition. The contest enables artists to display their work.

"All he needs to do is to complete an application form when the competition is launched later this year," said the spokesman.

"If he's selected, his sculpture could go on show at Leicester's New Walk Museum."

Alan showing  his mettle with sculpture of soldier


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