He's one of the best known symbols of London, but 'Eros' is also a Lancashire landmark.
It's often said that the statue of Eros in Piccadilly Square is not Eros at all, but his twin brother Anteros (though see here for some scepticism on that point).
Whoever the winged youth might be, one thing's for certain: he does indeed have a twin brother... but he's up in Lancashire.
The cloned statue graces a roundabout in Fleetwood, a few miles north of Blackpool. He's an exact replica of the London original, and even stands on an identical fountain base.
While our Eros has survived the slings and arrows of the London smog since 1893, his northern counterpart has found the seaside air a little too bracing. The aluminium statue was installed in 1999, but had to be removed six years later after suffering irreparable corrosion. He's since been replaced with a more hardy bronze version.
Both iterations of the Lancashire statue were paid for by Doreen Lofthouse, whose family firm has made the Fisherman's Friend lozenges in Fleetwood for four generations. Up to her death in March 2021, Lofthouse donated millions of pounds to community projects in Fleetwood, and gifted many works of art.
She acquired the statue at auction in 1997. It had previously been housed within the Trocadero centre, close to Piccadilly Circus, and had been cast using sculptor Alfred Gilbert's original plaster model. In its new home, the migratory Eros stands as a symbol of Lofthouse's love for the region.
The northern coastal area where the statue finds itself has little in common with the bustling West End of London. However, if you look at the roundabout in Street View, you might just spot a subtle reference to Theatreland.
The Fleetwood Eros is not the only copy in existence. At least 10 casts of the winged love god have been made. Those on public display include a replica in Adelaide's Art Gallery of South Australia, and the one below in Sefton Park Liverpool.
If we consider Liverpool to be in Lancashire (as it was historically before the creation of Merseyside in 1974), then the title of this article is incomplete. Turns out there are TWO statues of Eros in Lancashire. As the region's most famous sons once declared: All you need is love.