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Petition launched for Ritchie Blackmore’s hometown to honor the guitarist with historic blue plaque

Ritchie Blackmore blue plaque petition
(Image credit: Epsilon / Getty)

A resident of Ritchie’s Blackmore’s UK hometown is campaigning to have a plaque installed in honor of the Deep Purple and Rainbow guitar legend.

Blackmore was born in the seaside town of Weston-super-Mare, in the picturesque county of Somerset (on the West Coast of the UK) in 1945, before his family moved to the London suburbs two years later.

Now a Weston local, John Cadwalader, has started a petition to persuade the Weston-super-Mare town council to erect a blue plaque in honor of Blackmore and “his services to music”.

First used by UK charity English Heritage in 1866, a blue plaque denotes the links between British buildings and other places of interest to notable names of the past and present. 

The idea has spread around the world and has been used to commemorate the links between places and people in all manner of backgrounds and accomplishments, from Lord Byron to Freddie Mercury.

“So far, we have plaques dedicated to, amongst others, Haile Selassie and Roald Dahl,” Cadwalader tells Guitar World. “People say that plaques are only dedicated to dead people! But thats not exactly true; I have word that the council are apprehensive to dedicate a plaque to anyone living in case they 'fall from grace' later in life. My job is to get one for Ritchie while still alive!”

As such, Cadwalader – who reports he has the endorsement of the guitarist and his family – has started a petition to raise awareness of the campaign and to get the attention of Weston-super-Mare’s town council. 

If you think it’s time Blackmore’s hometown celebrated its part in the life and musical accomplishments of one of the UK’s most influential guitarists, sign the petition to install a plaque in honor of Ritchie Blackmore…

Matt Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.