5th Jul, 2022

Plans on show for massive Angel Of The North-style monument by M42

John Carlon 29th Oct, 2019 Updated: 29th Oct, 2019

A CHRISTIAN group aiming to build a huge monument near Solihull – that will dominate the landscape between the M42 and M6 – is hosting a public consultation in Kingshurst this week.

The Wall Developments will show its ambitious plans for a huge 50-metre-high roadside monument between Solihull and the M42.

Residents can inspect the plans at Kingshurst Evangelical Church, Cooks Lane, from 11am to 9pm on October 31.

The development is led by Richard Gamble, a former chaplain to Leicester City FC, who wants to fulfill a vision from God by building the giant Mobius strip on the ten acre site.

In plans online, Mr Gamble said The Wall will “create a piece of public art for the nation, which captures a million accounts of how Jesus answered prayers.”

Gamble said inspiration for ‘the wall of answered prayer’ was given to him by God 15 years ago. He aims to collect a million stories of answered prayers, inscribe the stories on bricks, and use them in the 50-metre-high arch by the M42.

He also hopes to use a further million bricks to build houses for social tenants.

Lord Edmiston, the billionaire benefactor of the Grace Academy schools, provided land for the wall after his Coleshill Manor estate was requisitioned for the construction of HS2.

Mr Edmiston, who made his fortune importing Subaru cars, was formerly a Conservative peer.

The Coleshill Manor site is also in line for a new £25 million surf centre, with a five-acre wave lagoon, according to Press Association.

A crowdfunding campaign started by Mr Gamble recently succeeded in securing £45,000 to commission an architecture competition, which was won by Southampton design practice Snug.

Paul Bulkeley, Snug lead architect for The Wall, said: ‘It is an honour to have been chosen to design and deliver this project of national significance.

‘We are excited by the vision behind this groundbreaking project and are looking forward to working with the team to see it become a reality. At Snug Architects we believe this will be a structure that both inspires and engages visitors for many years to come.’

Gamble has said he hopes his monument would be as significant for the Midlands as the Angel of the North. He added: “Around 500,000 journeys will travel past this monument every week, and we estimate that 150-200,000 people will visit this site annually.”

He hopes one million people will buy a brick for £10, to finance the structure.

Speaking to the Church Times, Mr Gamble said: “We plan for the wall to last 200 years. We worked out that over 200 years the Church will spend £1.7 billion on carpets. If you compare the two, we think it is a good investment.”

A planning application has not yet been submitted to North Warwickshire Council.

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