It's steely great: Sculpture unveiled at Beacon Business Park in Stafford

A new sculpture has been unveiled on the roundabout at Beacon Business Park in Stafford.

From one side a beacon can be seen
From one side a beacon can be seen

The Stafford Knot and Beacon is made up of metal arms but the magic of it is that it depicts something different depending on what angle it is viewed from.

By looking at it from Weston Road East or West, the county's distinctive Stafford knot will be seen.

Karl Hall from Brierly Hill who works for Midlands Road Maintenance stands by the new sculpture in the Beacon Business Park.

However, anyone viewing it from Blackheath Lane or exiting the business park will see a beacon.

It was organised by Staffordshire County Council and donated by the business park bosses, hence the elaborate design.

The initial concept of the sculpture was thought up by Colin Butt and it was produced by local sculptor, Neil Wood.

Mr Wood has been a professional sculptor and fine artist for over 25 years.

He produced this sculpture from a small model which had been created on a 3D printer.

It is stainless steel with a concrete base that can be found at the junction of Weston Road.

Roads were closed earlier this week in order for the sculpture to be installed after being transferred from Mr Wood's studios in Brocton, where he made it.

Chris Simmons, one of the directors at Beacon Business Park, said: “We were delighted to find an accomplished and nationally-renowned sculptor."

It was an intricate process for Mr Wood who had to modify the original design in a small sketch.

From this, he figured out how to construct the pieces and assemble them, taking into account the weight of the metal. The next stage was to create templates for each of the arms to build a framework for the stainless steel plate to be welded onto.

It was constructed from 12 sheets of British Stainless Steel.

Safety factors did not go amiss, as they had to have extensive consultations with the County Highways department to take safety issues into account.

In order to make it stand out but avoid the risk of dazzling drivers in the sunlight, it had a brush finish to give it a long lasting sheen.

Mr Wood said: "It is quite a departure for me to work to a very specific brief, but I’ve enjoyed the process."

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