Plans for mural in Cheltenham street get short shrift from heritage guardians
PLANS to install a colourful mural on a bustling Cheltenham street have attracted criticism from protectors of the town's heritage.
Trade networking group Cheltenham Connect wants to install the seven foot piece of art on the wall outside the Exmouth Arms in Bath Road.
It has been designed as an interpretation of the road's history with a variety of traders, including a greengrocer, a butcher and a publican.
However, initial drawings of how the mural would look have left members of Cheltenham Civic Society unimpressed.
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John Henry, chairman of the group's planning forum, said he was concerned the designs looked overly cluttered.
"We are not convinced that this is the right thing here," he said.
"In our view it is of questionable merit, the design being too busy."
However, owners of the Exmouth Arms gave a staunch defence of the £3,500 mural.
And they said final designs for the piece were yet to be agreed.
Pub manager Sarah Capewell said: "Although we have not submitted the application ourselves, it's on our property so we would not be getting behind it if we didn't think it was a good idea.
"The initial drawings are subject to change, but overall we think it would be a positive addition to the street."
An application for the plans has been submitted on behalf of trade networking group Cheltenham Connect.
It is part of a wider project aimed at making a raft of improvements to the road, including the addition of new street furniture and plant tubs.
Wendy Ellyatt, founder of Cheltenham Connect, said she hoped the proposals would be well-received.
"Bath Road is such a wonderfully unique part of Cheltenham and this would be something to catch the eye of people driving past," she said."
It has been funded by a public art grant and could be in place by September.