REVEALED: The amazing new Ray Lonsdale sculpture that will be centrepiece of new £15m retail park
and live on Freeview channel 276
The giant artwork – in the shape of a miner’s helmet – pays tribute to the mining heritage of Houghton and will stand on the site of the town’s former colliery, which is being turned into a new retail hub, including a Tesco supermarket, and a Home Bargains store, with the two outlets expected to create around 100 jobs.
Councillor Kevin Johnston, Dynamic City Cabinet Member, said: “This is a poignant tribute to the city’s industrial heritage and a piece I am really proud we have been able to deliver for the people of Houghton, whose past is very important to them.
“The piece is looking fantastic, and we’re looking forward to working with officers at the council to agree a plan for its installation.”
The piece – which will be visible from the end of Newbottle Street – represents the end of the pits, depicting people hanging up their equipment for the last time.
Cllr Juliana Heron, Labour’s Houghton ward councillor, said: “This important site is being brought back into use and ensuring we have a fitting focal point for people visiting, that celebrates the past of the area, is something I am really pleased to see moving forward.
“Ray is an incredible artist and his work on this sculpture is magnificent.”