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Lights go out on iconic Rossendale sculpture
AN ICONIC East Lancashire struc- ture is failing to light up the Ross-endale valley – because its bulbs aren’t working.
The Halo sculpture, which sits on Top o’ Slate, overlooking Haslingden, is supposed to be visible from the nearby M66 and A56.
But one visitor claims it can ‘hardly be seen from the footpath beside it’ due to the majority of LED bulbs not operating. David Wilde, from Wilm-slow, in Cheshire, travelled to see the Panopticon sculpture the weekend before last, with a friend from Darwen.
He said: “I am very interested in photography and had read about the Halo online. When we got there it was very disapp-ointing. There was more litter than light bulbs.
“I made a 70-mile round trip and was expecting a gateway into Lancashire and Rossendale, but not one of the seven rings on the Halo was fully lit.
“When I look at the photos online and then look at the ones I took, it’s hysterical to compare the two.”
Mr Wilde said he cont-acted Mid Pennine Arts, who were behind the project when it launched in September 2007, only for his concerns to be laughed off by staff.
Nick Hunt, creative director for the arts group, said that this was not the case. He said: “We have been aware since last week that some of the lighting is not working.
“The Halo was devel-oped as part of a part-nership programme and, as a small organisation, we passed over respons-ibility to Rossendale Bor-ough Council.
“But we have to rem-ember they are in the middle of making a lot of cuts and, as such, may not have the manpower to fix these problems immed-iately.
“We would hate for anyone who visits the site to be disappointed.
“In general, we’ve had a terrific response.”
It is understood that problems with the wind turbine, which powers the timer connected to the lights, are to blame, and a maintenance team from the council is due to look at the problem next week.
Haslingden councillor Granville Morris said: “It is one of the sights that is synonymous with Hasl-ingden, so it is important that it is fixed and work-ing correctly.
“People come a long way to see it, so we want them to be seeing it in working order, and enjoying it.
“It is one of the high-lights of Rossendale and is one of the big tourist attractions, so we need it in full working order.”
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