King newt is crowning glory as 20ft tall sculpture installed at nature reserve

A steel sculpture towering almost 20 feet has been installed at a nature reserve, honouring a protected species that lives there.

Metal artist Luke Perry, next to the giant crested newt he has made and installed at Fens Pool Nature Reserve
Metal artist Luke Perry, next to the giant crested newt he has made and installed at Fens Pool Nature Reserve

The yellow and green newt sculpture, made by Black Country artist Luke Perry, now stands proudly at Fens Pool Nature Reserve, in Pensnett, Brierley Hill, Dudley.

The project was funded by the National Lottery after an application was made by the park's friends group.

Mr Perry, aged 37 from Stourbridge, said: "The Fens Pool has got a listed creature which is the crested newt.

"When that was discovered, it allowed them to gain access to protected status.

The sculpture installed at the nature reserve

"It has been one of those sites that people have wanted to build on for a long while.

"When the newt was discovered, it became clear that was not an option really.

"The newt in many ways helped to protect the site. In a circular form, the newt protects the site, and the site protects the newt."

The art project has been in the pipeline for years but it took Mr Perry around two-and-a-half months to sculpt.

The sculpture weighs around a tonne, is made from galvanised steel and is painted in yellow and green.

It stands at around six metres tall, the equivalent of 19.6 feet.

Mr Perry continued: "We have already had people stop and take loads of photos.

"It is in front of a beautiful landscape of water, and greenery, and blue skies, which not everybody expects to see in the middle of Pensnett.

"I suppose it is drawing attention to something that people might take for granted."

He added: "It was commissioned by the friends of Fens Pool, and nature reserve, and that was in turn funded by the National Lottery.

"It was specifically money for arts. It wasn't public money."

For more information about Mr Perry's work, visit www.ihsartworks.com.

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