Call for 'ewe' turn on roundabout sculptures

HUNMANBY'S Stan Dickin-son has called for a "ewe"– turn on plans to instal a landmark sculpture in the middle of a roundabout at the southern end of the Reighton by-pass.

For the past month or so, a lone sheep – which is a taster for the proposed artwork by Bridlington-based sculptor Ronald Falck – has been attracting quizzical looks from passing drivers.

Mr Dickinson said: “I’m not against it in principle, but we’ve got enough distractions. If they put it on a straight stretch of road it would be more acceptable, and I’m going to campaign to have it removed.”

Mr Falck, who is known to many as the artist-in-residence at Castle Howard, said he had carried out his own survey comparing the speed of traffic with and without the sheep.

“With the sheep on the island, the traffic was slowing down and it’s true people were glancing at it, but they were also being more careful. Where are the accidents? Someone put a funny hat on it one day, but I don’t mind that kind of humour.”

Mr Falck has the backing of local councillors to create a 12ft sculpture depicting a shepherd playing his flute with a dog at his side and a small flock of sheep.

He said: “The whole idea is to create a beautiful silhouette against magnificent skies which is a feature of the island from any approach.

“Mr Dickinson wants to move the sculpture down the road into a less safe area where vehicles stopping would create a dangerous hazard because there is no parking space. There is, however, a safe viewing area at the island where people can park to view and photograph if they so wish.”

Highways improvements officer Les Parker said it was unclear whether planning permission was required or not, but he had no objections to the sculpture being there.

“As for the distraction, there’s public art on roundabout all round the country. It’s always the driver’s job to be safe on the road, and one of the biggest distractions round here is the scenery.

“It’s not for me to say whether it’s good or bad art.”