Ideas wanted for £25k piece of art
FAMILIES are being urged to submit their ideas for a £25,000 piece of public art in a town centre.
The artwork will become the centrepiece for a new town square planned for Alsager as part of an £8 million redevelopment scheme.
It will be on the site of the existing Co-op supermarket, in Lawton Road, which will be knocked down before the area is transformed into a square with seating and a children's play area.
A number of artists have already submitted design ideas for the project which include statues of wildlife and pieces which portray the town's connection to the railways, wartime history and Saxon heritage.
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Residents were asked to give their views on the latest ideas at a public consultation session at Alsager Civic Centre on Saturday.
Civic centre manager James Bettany said: "The idea of the consultation is to show residents the possibilities of what can be achieved here and to engage them in the decision-making process when it comes to it.
"We are asking people to let us know what they would or would not like to see in the town centre.
"The artist we choose will then go back to the drawing board to create some ideas which mirror those of the people of Alsager.
"The money has been donated to the town by the Co-operative Group so we hope to put it to the best use. "The piece of art could be anything from a sculpture to a seat or even a painting."
Dozens of shoppers took part in Saturday morning's consultation event.
Bob Jones, aged 74, of Cranfield Drive, Alsager, said: "Before any decision is made, we need to think about the type of artwork that would attract youths or something that could be easily targeted by vandals. "We need to make sure that this doesn't happen because Alsager doesn't have a lot of artwork so it will be something special for the town."
Lorna Hopkins, aged 76, of Close Lane, Alsager, said: "The idea of a town square is lovely.
"It will be a really nice place for people to meet and chat and the public art will finish it off nicely.
"I just hope whatever it is represents Alsager in some way."
Seventy-year-old Ann Weatherall, of Talke, added: "I would like to see some sort of sculpture which has a lot of colour in it because it will look nice and attract more people to that part of the town."
The new Co-op store – which will be double the size of the existing supermarket – is due to open in time for Christmas.
Work started on the new development earlier this month and will continue for nine weeks.
During that time, temporary traffic lights in place along Lawton Road are expected to cause traffic disruption.