Conservatives welcome rethink over Keynsham art project

Conservative councillors in Keynsham have welcomed the news that Bath and North East Somerset Council has agreed to go back to the drawing board over plans for an art project in the new town centre.

The Council has now said it will instead focus on bringing forward designs for a new Town Clock.

The announcement comes following pressure from local councillors, who, alongside the Keynsham Civic Society, had called for a complete rethink of the sculpture’s previous design.

Concerns had been voiced over the level of public involvement in the previous design, with many local residents saying they felt the sculpture bore little relation to Keynsham’s heritage. A consultation undertaken in August on the proposed design produced only 107 responses, 50 of which said they disliked the design and with only 14 voicing approval.

Local Conservatives in the town have said they are pleased that public feedback has been listened to, having pressed the Council to bring forward for new proposals which better reflect Keynsham’s heritage and which include the option of a new Town Clock.

Conservative councillor Alan Hale (Cons, Keynsham South), who will sit on the Arts Advisory Group, said:

“Conservative councillors welcome the fact that B&NES has agreed to a complete rethink of this art project. It’s important that the response from the public is listened to and that lessons are learnt so that local people feel they have a greater involvement in what goes into our new town centre.

“It’s clear from the public feedback that many people would like to see something which better reflects Keynsham’s heritage, with the idea of a new clock tower particularly popular amongst local people. It’s good to see that our suggestion that various options be produced for residents to comment on has also been taken up. I believe that we in the community can now have confidence that the Arts Advisory Group under new and proper chairmanship will protect our town’s interest.”