Ely’s Unmade Bed’

SURELY the proposal for the monstrosity which is to pose as an art work on the banks of our river is a huge joke. While the stone water feature and the metal eel in Jubilee Gardens are unusual they do at least have some connection with the city and its p

SURELY the proposal for the monstrosity which is to pose as an art work on the banks of our river is a huge joke.

While the stone water feature and the metal eel in Jubilee Gardens are unusual they do at least have some connection with the city and its past, the intended structure has nothing to do with the city and will clearly detract from the general view of the river.

Who, when enjoying a quiet walk along the river, wants a video picture and sound effects of an event taking place miles downstream when the beautiful view is in front of them. Art is meant to enhance one's feelings and give pleasure; this creation will do the opposite, it will in fact be Ely's 'Unmade Bed' and 'Pickled Cow' so loved by the arty crowd at the Turner Prize. It is not sculpture or art and could have been devised by a second year primary school group, of course without the video or sound effects and at no cost.

Although it is stated that none of the costs has come from taxpayers' money, the fact that £27,500 has been the council contribution, means that monies held by East Cambs District Council on behalf of the taxpayers has been wasted by assisting in paying for this useless object .

PHILIP J GOULD

Dovehouse Close

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Ely

# I THINK it is outrageous that the planning committee's decision to approve the proposed new siting of the controversial Sluice installation on the green by The Maltings on Ely's waterfront has been made at a time when the people who have bought the four lovely new houses next to The Maltings, expecting an unimpeded river view, have no doubt paid their money but not yet moved in. Their interests surely deserve more sensitive consideration.

In my view, there is no suitable site for this large installation, featuring artificial lighting effects, on by the riverside at Ely, a place where people go for walks as a relief from urban pressures. It belongs, if not in the precincts of an art gallery, then inside or outside a museum of technology, or the headquarters of some organisation concerned with water-management.

JANET FAIRWEATHER

By email

# FURTHER to my flippant letter about the Sluice last week, I have been shocked to read that this piece of 'art' is only intended to last for 10 years. Surely no sensible person would consider forking out the best part of £130,000 on something that will depreciate in value from day one?

Don't people buy 'art' to enjoy in the present and in the hope that it will appreciate in value for the benefit and edification of future generations?

Furthermore, faced as we are with drastic cuts in spending on local flood defences, the theme of The Sluice is somewhat ironic. We may find it reflecting not so much the skill and ingenuity of the engineers who originally drained the Fens, but rather our own folly as waters rise and property values plummet.

JACKIE PETTS

Prickwillow

By email

# PLEASE add my name to the 52 per cent of people who consider the proposed Sluice sculpture totally inappropriate alongside our beautiful natural river front, and a huge waste of money.

An independent poll should have been taken before taking on this project. Likewise, a poll wouldn't be a bad thing on the question of relocating the council offices.

For a city that has more or less doubled in size over recent years, and still growing, from my point of view, the new offices and parking at Angel Drove with plenty of park-and-ride sounds a sensible solution.

BARBARA STILES

Chapel Street

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