Greyfriars Green, Coventry - A Coventry Gem!

Greyfriars Green is situated at Warwick Row in Coventry. It is home to the statues of James Starley, Sir Thomas White and Bucephalus known to locals as Trigger (a metal horse).

Where is Greyfriars Green?

Greyfriars Green is at 3 Queen Victoria Road, Coventry, CV1 1EY. It is also next to Warwick Row and the Coventry Ring Road (Ringway Queens).


In brief

A public garden at the southside of Coventry City Centre within the ring road. The green features several statues, including James Starley, who invented the bicycle in 1870, and Sir Thomas White. A metal horse sculpture called Bucephalus, is known to Coventry locals as Trigger. There is also a horse trough with flowers dedicated in the memory of Caroline Bray. She was close friends of the novelist George Eliot, who attended school in nearby Warwick Row.

Greyfriars Green, Coventry. Photography by Daniel Sturley.


Greyfriars Green - history

The Greyfriars name refers to the Franciscan Friary that had been founded here by 1234. The friary was dissolved by Henry VIII in 1538 (during the Reformation). The area had been rebuilt by the early 1800s, including a green. The statue of Sir Thomas White was installed around 1883, followed by that of James Starley in 1884. The prancing horse sculpture called Bucephalus, followed a century later in 1986. A trough in memory of Caroline Bray was re-sited to the green in 2002.

Greyfriars GreenGreyfriars Green, Coventry, West Midlands (1890-1910) - Historic England


Statue of James Starley

There is a statue of James Starley (1830 - 1881) on Greyfriars Green. In 1870 he invented the bicycle. The statue was made by Joseph Whitehead and Sons in 1884.

James Starley CoventryStatue of James Starley, Greyfriars Green, Coventry (April 2014). Photography by Elliott Brown


Statue of Sir Thomas White

There is a statue of Sir Thomas White (1492 - 1567). He was a cloth merchant and Lord Mayor of London in 1553. He established King Henry VIII School in Coventry around 1555, where one of the school's four houses bears his name. The statue was made in 1883 by W. W. Wills and T. W. Wills.

Sir Thomas White CoventryStatue of Sir Thomas White, Greyfriars Green, Coventry (April 2014). Photography by Elliott Brown



A metal horse sculpture, known to Coventry locals as Trigger. Bucephalus was sculpted by Simon Evans in 1986. It was removed to storage in 2014 during the rebuilding of Junction Six of Coventry Ring Road (what would become the Friarsgate development). It was restored by Andy Langley, and returned here in February 2018.

Bucephalus CoventryBucephalus, Greyfriars Green, Coventry (March 2019). Photography by Elliott Brown


Caroline Bray, horse trough

What looks like a horse trough with gravestone at the end, used for planted flowers. It was in memory of Caroline Bray, and her husband Charles. They were friends of George Eliot, the Victorian novelist, who used to attend school at the nearby Warwick Row. This memorial trough was formerly on Queens Road, was re-sited jointly by CV One, Coventry City Council and the George Eliot Fellowship in June 2002. It was originally installed by the Coventry Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and was erected in memory of Caroline Bray, who founded the above society in 1878.

Caroline Bray Coventry

Caroline Bray, horse trough at Greyfriars Green, Coventry (October 2017). Photography by Elliott Brown

Project dates

09 Aug 2021 - On-going


History & heritage, Environment & green action, Green open spaces


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Jonathan Bostock

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