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Controversial Stowmarket roundabout sculpture wins planning permission



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A sculpture on a roundabout has been approved by planners - despite some controversy from the community.

The Stowmarket artwork will sit on the oval roundabout in Gun Cotton Way which has an exit to Linnet Drive.

The art, known as ‘Rural Reflections’, will be crafted from steel and references Stowmarket’s agricultural heritage whilst paying homage to the area’s road names.

The oval roundabout on Gun Cotton Way, south of Linnet Drive. Picture: Jenny Davidson
The oval roundabout on Gun Cotton Way, south of Linnet Drive. Picture: Jenny Davidson

Mid Suffolk District Council has approved a planning application for the project and has provided £15,000 in funding with a further £1000 pledged by Bellway Homes.

When the plans were published, residents on social media raised concerns about the project.

On the Stowmarket Community Noticeboard, one said: “I'm all for sculptures or whatever, but the Crown Street Roundabout has had that orange temporary fencing for years now due to lack of budget.

A map of where the work of art is to be installed. Picture: Jenny Davidson
A map of where the work of art is to be installed. Picture: Jenny Davidson

“If we've suddenly got 15k to spend on roundabouts maybe we could work on the broken ones first?”

Another said: “Why would we want this? If the council has suddenly got money, surely it would be better spent on fixing up that sad state of affairs that we call the town centre?”

Project manager Jenny Davidson said: “It has felt like a long process to get where we are, but it’s been quite rewarding to bring the project through to fruition.

“I feel really good about it and we’re now looking forward to the next stage of the project.”

A drawing of the winning design voted on by the people of Stowmarket. Picture: Jenny Davidson
A drawing of the winning design voted on by the people of Stowmarket. Picture: Jenny Davidson

This next stage is finding builders to help put up the artwork.

The project is on schedule to be installed by the end of this year.