White Palm will ‘add vibrancy’ to North Prom

White Palm will ‘add vibrancy’ to North Prom

White Palm will ‘add vibrancy’ to North Prom

The controversial White Palm set to be constructed on Cleethorpes seafront will ‘add vibrancy and value’ to the North Prom, according to Councillor John Fenty.

This step of the Cleethorpes regeneration project was discussed at yesterday evening’s full council meeting of North East Lincolnshire Council, which was held virtually.

Thus far, Cleethorpes residents have been overwhelmingly opposed to the sculpture.

Despite this, the council say that they are looking to team up with specialist contractors to build the ‘iconic’ new structure.

Speaking at the meeting, Councillor Fenty’s comments were prompted by a question from a member of the public, Mr Paul Arundel, who said:

“Is it right for the Council to spend money on the sculpture of a palm tree that has no relevance to Cleethorpes, when the money could be better spent on the disabled facilities for residents and visitors to Cleethorpes?”

Councillor Fenty responded:

“Firstly, I would like to say that public art can often be very controversial.

“My guess is that roughly 60% think it is a good idea, 20% are there to be convinced, and 20% would say ‘over my dead body’.

“It might interest you to know, that this is one part of a five-strand project to be installed on the North Prom, all intended to help drive additional footfall and support businesses.”

Planning approval for the White Palm has now been granted by North East Lincolnshire Council.

The sculpture, designed by German artist Wolfgang Weileder, is taller than the Angel of the North.

Fenty continued:

“It is a fact that the Angel, when first proposed, met strong resistance from locals but now is much loved and has become an iconic symbol of the North.

“This clutch of projects will be there to attract tourism, but it is also for local people who might want to take advantage of free parking after hours, see the sights, and or, to help them with their fitness programme.

“Who knows, we may one day see a strong man competition come to Cleethorpes, alongside a range of other events along the North Prom.

“It is felt that together with the wider Cleethorpes programme, these projects will add vibrancy and value to North Prom.”

The project is being funded by a grant from the The Coastal Communities Fund.

It has been allocated by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and local Government for the specific purpose of public works, business support and the public art programme.

As it is not direct council cash, it could not be used on disabled facilities, Councillor Fenty reminded his audience.

Consultation works with specialist fabricators began back in May.

Contact Gi Grimsby
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