Giant rugby ball sculpture could be a ‘hazard’ to pedestrians

The sculpture outside John Barford car park
The sculpture outside John Barford car park

A resident is calling for a giant rugby ball sculpture to be removed as it could be a ‘‘hazard’’ for pedestrians.

Rugby resident Michael Young wrote to the Advertiser earlier this week to share his views on the sculpture left over from the Rugby World Cup.

The piece was installed as part of the World Cup celebrations and others are located in Caldecott Park and Chapel Street.

Mr Young’s letter said: “Belated cynical thanks to the anonymous town hall official who sanctioned the placing 
of a piece of street sculpture outside the John Barford car park - a legacy of the otherwise easily overlooked Rugby World Cup.

“The oversize rugby ball in question, positioned across the paved walkway, between the upper and lower areas, demonstrates a contempt for pedestrians; compels us lower orders onto the adjoining, supposedly cultivated soil but which in effect is a mud bath; creates a safety hazard and provides an obstacle course of sloping and irregular kerb stones for those seeking a ticket machine in which to invest £1 minimum.

“It is unlikely that our local MP and rugby football enthusiast should ever have cause to use the public car park but suffice to say that this monstrosity is no more than 50 yards from the back door of his (Mark Pawsey’s) local office. I hope he will join in urging removal.”

Mr Young suggested the sculpture could be moved outside the old Marks and Spencer store in High Street.

A spokesman for Rugby Borough Council said there were no plans to move the sculpture.

“The five sculptures which form the Rugby’s Got Balls project have received an overwhelmingly positive response since being unveiled at the start of the town’s Rugby World Cup celebrations.

The sculpture at the John Barford has been in place since September and we currently have no plans to move it.”

The giant rugby ball sculptures were inspired by the town’s Proud Home of the Game theme and went on display in the town centre during the build up to the World Cup.

The pieces of public art formed Rugby’s Got Balls, a project launched by arts collective
Kookooshaboo to celebrate the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
With support from Rugby Borough Council’s arts development team, Kookooshaboo enlisted the help of the community to create the distinctive rugby ball sculptures.

Kookooshaboo - Leanne Gilroy, Ann Crearie and Kate Thomas - met at university while studying art and joined forces to launch the arts collective.