Call For Prog Hero John Wetton To Win Posthumous Hometown Recognition

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John Wetton photo by Steve Morley and Redferns
Photo: Steve Morley/Redferns

A movement is under way to have the late progressive rock musician John Wetton recognised in the English city of Derby. Wetton died of colon cancer in January, at the age of 67, after a distinguished career of some 50 years. He was born in the Derbyshire town of Willington, some eight miles south of Derby, in 1949.

An initial collection of eight plaques by local artist Tim Clapcott, under the name Made In Derby, is to be unveiled next spring in the paving of Albion Street and the adjoining Exchange Street in the city’s St. Peter’s Quarter, recognising notable people with a strong association to the local area.

When the Derby Telegraph ran a story announcing the project and inviting suggestions from readers for worthy recipients, it was noticed by progrsssive rock fan Pete Marriott, also a reader of Prog magazine. He told the latter publication: “I feel that John Wetton deserves the paving stone as he has done a lot over the years as a bass guitarist for countless bands (Roxy Music, King Crimson, Uriah Heep, Asia, Family etc etc) but yet I feel he doesn’t get the recognition he deserves in Derby.”

The idea for Made In Derby arose from discussions between the Derby Telegraph, Derby City Council and local business leaders. The estimated costs of £70,000 are being entirely funded through a grant from the Local Enterprise Partnership, D2N2. Suggestions for nominations for plaques can be made via the form at the end of the Derby Telegraph story.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Lisa Wetton

    November 20, 2017 at 4:17 pm

    To Paul Sexton. Thank you for the article. I do, however, need to correct an inaccuracy. As per John’s brother, Robert, they were both actually born right in Derby Hospital, and not in the village of Willington, as you state above. John’s parents tended to a shop in Willington. Thank you. Sincerely, Lisa Wetton.

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