Ipswich: Row brews ahead of sculpture’s unveiling at University Campus Suffolk

IPSWICH: A controversial �200,000 piece of public art will be unveiled later this week as the row over its cost rumbles on.

The question mark sculpture will be officially uncovered outside University Campus Suffolk’s (UCS) Waterfront building on Thursday.

It comes as Councillor George Debman – whose Holywells ward includes the Waterfront – branded the artwork a waste of money.

But Mike Cook, from the preservation group Ipswich Society, backed the black and white sculpture by claiming public art was an important part of peoples’ lives. UCS has also defended the scheme, saying it was duty-bound to commission it because it formed part of planning consent for its Waterfront building.

Cllr Debman said: “I think it’s a waste of money in this economic climate, I think the money could have been spent a lot better.”

Mr Cook, the society’s planning co-ordinator, said: “People were very reluctant about the Angel of the North but now people are driving up that section of the A1 just to look at it.

“I think there should be public art. It might seem to people, struggling financially, a huge sum of money, but, I’m afraid to say, in the context of the huge sums spent by central government on higher education facilities in Ipswich in the last five years, it’s peanuts.”

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The sculpture, which is intended to link the university’s northern and southern sites, has been funded by UCS and �100,000 in grants.

n Is this money well spent? Write to: Your Letters, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail evening starletters@eveningstar.co.uk