Actress Gillian Anderson has thrown her support behind a campaign to erect a statue of CHARLES DICKENS in the British novelist's hometown.

The X-Files star, who has enjoyed roles in Bbc adaptations of DICkens' Great Expectations and Bleak House, has become a patron of the DICkens Fellowship, a non-profit organisation dedicated to celebrating the famed author's life and works.

She is now backing a drive to fund the U.K.'s first statue of DICkens, which is due to be unveiled in his hometown of Portsmouth, England in June (13).

The statue was due to be erected last year (12), to mark 200 years since his birth, but the project was put on hold due to funding problems.

Anderson tells the Bbc, "I was surprised that there was not a DICkens statue anywhere in Great Britain. He was born in Portsmouth... The idea that a potential statue here would draw attention to (the issues raised in his work)... and expand people's knowledge of and interest in DICkens and his writing... The idea (is) that a statue would bring attention to where that is still an issue today and start conversations about it."

The statue is due to be unveiled in Portsmouth's Guildhall Square on 9 June 2013, the 133rd anniversary of the author's death.