A monument to the world’s first man in space, Russian cosmonaut Yury Gagarin, was unveiled on Thursday in London, the Russian Space Agency Roscosmos said.
The monument is located near the British Council headquarters on The Mall, leading to Buckingham Palace.
Roscosmos chief Vladimir Popovkin thanked the British authorities for choosing London as a place for erecting the monument to Gagarin.
“It was he who led the way to space,” Popovkin said.
Russia and Britain have designated this year the Year of Space, commemorating the 50th anniversary of Gagarin’s flight into space in 1961.
The London monument is a copy of the monument to Gagarin in the town of Lyubertsy in Moscow region where the future cosmonaut went to vocational school.
Gagarin visited London in July 1961, three months after his legendary flight.
He met members of the foundry workers Union during his visit, as he had worked as a foundryman before his career in aeronautics, as well as with the British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan and Queen Elizabeth II.