Prince Albert of Monaco has unveiled a sculpture of his late mother Princess Grace in Newport, Co Mayo.

The piece has been created by local sculptor, Mark Rode, who worked from an image of the former Hollywood actress and Oscar winner which was personally selected by the prince.

The sculpture is situated close to Newport's landmark seven-arch viaduct.

A video produced by the Newport Business Association shows the sculptor honing his craft at his studio in Killasser, Swinford.

Darragh McGee is one of the event organisers.

"We're delighted to have Prince Albert unveil the statue. Mark Rode is a very talented sculptor and we've enjoyed watching him over the past year as his project nears completion. He works out of his studio in Swinford and we've been in and out watching him put the finishing touches to the statue."

Prince Albert's visit was organised by the Newport Business Association as part of The Two Graces project. The other icon of note is the legendary Mayo Pirate Queen, Grace O'Malley.

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The organisers say this is a "commemoration and celebration of two iconic women with strong Mayo links".

Prince Albert of Monaco is greeted as he arrives in Newport

They hope that these sculptures erected in their memory will attract visitors and boost tourism in the area.

Mr Rode will now begin work on the statue of Grace O'Malley, commonly known as Granuaile and the planned unveiling is expected to be early in 2024.

Other notable works by the sculptor include the Barack and Michelle Obama statue in Moneygall, Co Offaly, the Quiet Man Statue in Cong, Co Mayo, and the Titanic Memorial in Addergoole in Lahardane, Co Mayo.

Distant cousins of the Kelly clan gather in Newport

Princess Grace and her husband Prince Rainier of Monaco made their first visit to the Kelly ancestral home in 1961.

Prince Rainer and Princess Grace in 1956

John Kelly, grandfather of Princess Grace, left the humble thatched cottage in Drimurla, where he was born and reared, and emigrated to the United States in the second half of the 19th century. His son Jack, Grace's father, was a multimillionaire property developer and Olympic gold medallist rower.

Prince Albert and his wife Charlene Wittstock, Princess of Monaco, have also previously visited the area.