Fight launched to keep controversial ‘The Cambridge Don’ sculpture

Sculpture of a humanoid figure in university robes.
-Credit: (Image: Google)

A fight has been launched to try and keep the controversial ‘The Cambridge Don’ sculpture after calls were made for it to be removed. The statue was put up outside Charter House in Hills Road without planning permission. The sculpture is said to represent Prince Philip in his role as chancellor of the University of Cambridge and used to be located further south along Hills Road. In March Cambridge City Council issued a formal enforcement notice stating the sculpture needed to be permanently removed and the land it sits on restored to its former condition.

In the enforcement notice the city council said: “The unauthorised development, by reason of its scale, height and prominent location, has a harmful material impact on the visual amenity of the wider townscape and the New Town and Glisson Road Conservation Area. There are also no public benefits that would outweigh the moderate degree of less than substantial harm to the New Town and Glisson Road Conservation Area. The unauthorised development is therefore contrary to the Cambridge Local Plan 2018 policies.”

The city council also said the sculpture did not fulfil the key requirements of delivering ‘successful and high-quality public art’. Unex Ltd has now appealed against the enforcement notice in order to try and get permission to keep the sculpture where it is. An inquiry is due to be held by the planning inspectorate to consider the appeal, but a date for when this will take place has not yet been set.

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