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Angel Wings campaigner Olivia, 10, set for battle as Islington Council is told to get rid of famous sculpture

PUBLISHED: 09:39 01 June 2018 | UPDATED: 09:45 01 June 2018

Olivia Gordon Clark, 10, is campaigning to save the 'beautiful' Angel Central wings sculpture. Picture: Polly Hancock

Olivia Gordon Clark, 10, is campaigning to save the 'beautiful' Angel Central wings sculpture. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

Councillors will next week be encouraged to get rid of the famous wings sculpture at Angel Central shopping centre.

As reported by the Gazette, Angel Central wants to remove the huge landmark because it “does not reflect the quality” of its retailers.

It’s part of an £8million refurb plan, which also includes a bridge linking the shopping centre’s mezzanine and converting most of the basement car park into additional shops.

The application will go before Islington’s planning committee at the town hall on Thursday (7.30pm). It has been recommended for approval by planning officers. So councillors can expect 10-year-old Olivia Gordon Clark to be there raising hell.

Our coverage last year prompted Olivia, who lives around the corner from Angel Central in Cloudesley Road, to launch a “save our wings” campaign.

“I think the wings are really beautiful,” she said at the time. “What’s the point in naming this part of town ‘Angel’ when they want to take down the wings of an angel?”

After knocking on neighbours’ doors, Olivia’s petition to save the wings received 569 signatures, with another 367 online. There were 936 in all, and these will be taken into consideration tonight.

Olivia, who hopes to address the planning committee and persuade it to reject the plans, said ahead of the meeting: “I started the petition to save the wings. I don’t want local residents to wake up one cold morning to find they have been taken down!”

In documents received by councillors, a planning officer said: “The shopping centre is functional and well located, but has not been significantly upgraded since it was first opened, and has a tired appearance.

“Although there has been significant public objection to the loss of the Angel Wings sculpture, officers consider that, on balance, the development would contribute to the sustained growth of Angel town centre as a Major Centre.”

If councillors decide to approve the plans, an artist will be commissioned to create another piece for the site.

It has been pledged the wings would be relocated. However, there is no indication where this would be – bearing in mind the wings are site-specific to a small and densely populated part of Islington.

Olivia added: “If they do say the plans can go ahead, the wings have to be relocated within at least half a mile.”

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