Debate sparked over position of 30m long sculpture near UEA Broad

Photomontage image of how Anthony Caro's Goodwood Steps could look on the UEA campus

Photomontage image of how Anthony Caro's Goodwood Steps could look on the UEA campus - Credit: SCVA

A 30m long steel sculpture from a world-renowned abstract artist is to become the latest addition to a trail around the UEA campus.

However, concerns about how it will impact on the landscape of the site has sparked debate, with worries it will be "obtrusive" and be hijacked as a bird perch.

Sir Anthony Caro, one of the world's leading sculptors, who celebrates his eightieth birthday. To ma

Sir Anthony Caro, one of the world's leading sculptors, who celebrates his eightieth birthday. To mark the occasion, Sir Anthony's 1962 work 'Sculpture Two' has been installed in the garden at Tate Britain. The work will be on display until 9th May and next year will form part of the major retrospective of Caro's work, which opens at the gallery on 26th January 2005. - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Goodwood Steps by Sir Anthony Caro is poised to become the latest part of the Sainsbury's Centre for Visual Arts' sculpture trail around the university campus and surrounding areas.

Norwich City Council's planning committee will decide next week whether to allow the 30m long and 6.5m high sculpture to be put in place, with officers advising councillors to give it the all clear.

Photomontage image of what Anthony Caro's sculpture will look like from the Sainsbury's Centre

Photomontage image of what Anthony Caro's sculpture will look like from the Sainsbury's Centre - Credit: SCVA

However, ahead of the meeting, some concern has been raised about the placement of the structure, which is proposed to sit towards the brow of the hill close to the UEA Broad.


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These fears have been raised by the Yare Valley Society, which while largely supportive of its addition feel it would be better positioned elsewhere.

Society chairman John Elbro said: "We suggested it should be moved perhaps further away from the Broad and closer to the ziggurats. This would lessen its impact on the view of the Broad and make it less obtrusive.

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"We are broadly in real favour of the sculpture trail as a whole, but did feel we had to make this comment as we fear where it is would be quite overwhelming.

Prof Neil Powell, Pro Vice-Chancellor from Norwich University of the Arts alongside the new Sir Anth

Prof Neil Powell, Pro Vice-Chancellor from Norwich University of the Arts alongside the new Sir Anthony Caro sculpture. Picture: Neil Didsbury - Credit: Archant

"We've seen with other sculptures on the trail how they can be well-placed and well sheltered so as not to intrude, but there is a good sweep of open space where it is being suggested to be placed."

And a member of the public, who submitted the solitary formal objection to the project, said: "The sculpture will quickly be a dog urinal and will certainly attract gulls to sit atop and therefore be an eyesore."

But recommending the sculpture for approval, case officer Lee Cook wrote: "The scheme is an interesting project for the SCVA and UEA which hopefully could generate a lot of interest in the campus from the wider community and enhance knowledge of campus history, site development and architecture."

A spokesman for the SCVA declined to comment ahead of the final decision.

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