QUEEN Victoria stands alone surveying the devastation of the Cathedral Grounds and former Boulevard bus station.

But the priest in charge of the £33million Cathedral Quarter developments promised later this year she will have plenty to smile about.

The stone railings that flanked the 109-year-old landmark statue were removed at the weekend after the felling of nearby trees.

By the autumn, the new clergy court will be rising from the ruins and work started on the new 60-bed Premier Inn.

Cathedral Canon Andrew Hindley said: “Queen Victoria now looks out on a seen of semi-devastation.

“Building work proper starts after Easter. St Mary’s house will come down and then the works for the new clergy court start.

“By autumn it will be appearing along with the hotel. The statue will be protected and refurbished. The final development will be amazing, in these times miraculous.”