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Public artwork unveiled at Weymouth Gateway
Andy Kirkby, Paul Atterbury, Nicky Whittenham and Mayor Kate Wheller next to the Torpedosaur at Mount Pleasant Park and Ride entrance
WEYMOUTH has new artworks to admire after three sculptures celebrating the heritage and culture of the town were unveiled.
They were officially unveiled by Mayor Kate Wheller and BBC Antiques Roadshow expert Paul Atterbury in a ceremony at the Weymouth Gateway business park.
Watch a video here:
The public were invited to contribute ideas for the project which were incorporated into the sculptures, which were created by artist Andy Kirkby.
The sculptures include 'Torpedosaur', three ichthyosaurs created from torpedo shells celebrating the Jurassic coast heritage of the area combined with the Whitehead torpedo factory legacy.
The 'Under the Hill' sculpture is a bus stop adorned with musical instruments relating to the folklore about music being heard from underneath the ground at Bincombe Bumps.
The third sculpture, 'Frame' is a giant gold picture frame designed to reflect the ideas from the community.
Sculptor Andy Kirkby said: "It was a brilliant project to do and it was quite a long time in the making.
"We had a lot of meetings with the public and I really wanted to build something that reflected the lesser-known, secret history of the area, and I learned about things I've never heard of before."
"It would love to do more artwork in Weymouth, there's talk of creating a trail of sculptures from here all the way over to Portland, but there are no set plans to do that."
The project was funded by New Look and Sainsbury's and supported by Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.
Nicky Whittenham, public art consultant and project manager said: “I think the unveiling was fantastic, it exceeded everyone's expectations and was enjoyed by everyone.
“Members of the community were seeing the sculptures for the first time and were thrilled to see their ideas had been made into such fantastical forms.”
She added: “Everyone is hoping that this will be a springboard for similar future projects in the town.”
New Look and Sainsbury's hosted the event, supplying the 60 guests with afternoon tea, and also hired a Routemaster bus to transport guests between the sculptures.
Cllr Ian Bruce said “The event was really successful, it involved all of the community who'd had a lot of input into the concept of the sculptures.”
“We had a few public meetings at the Famous Old Spa pub on Dorchester Road and got a lot of ideas put forward.
“Everyone really enjoyed seeing the artwork, now I look forward to hearing what the rest of the public think of it.”
The three sculptures are spread across the business park, with the Torpedosaur located by the park and ride and the other sculptures built by the New Look offices and Sainsbury's.