Councillor Ken Gowans has resigned from his position as Chair of the ICArts Working Group, over plans to spend £758,350 of public money on the “Tilting Pier”, a new artistic structure placed over the River Ness.
Cllr Gowans said:
“I have resigned with immediate effect from my position as Chair of ICArts Working Group. I do not personally believe the “Tilting Pier” is a viable concept or one that will have any realistic chance of public support. I say that in the full knowledge that public art is often controversial, however, I feel that the public’s response in this case goes well beyond that. Whilst I am willing to take personal public criticism for matters I strongly believe in, I do not feel it is reasonable to ask me to do the same for a project I am not personally in favour of and one that I feel that the public will never support as demonstrated by the consultation analysis.”
The Highland Council has acknowledged that the project may be reviewed if public opinion over the coming weeks equals that of an early online poll, which established than many Inverssians viewed the prospective structure as a waste of money during a time of tough council budgets.
The tilting pier is the ugliest thing this author has seen in a while, and at a cost of over three quarters of a million pounds it is no wonder politicians are getting themselves out of the public’s firing line. In Westminster the SNP complain about the horrors of austerity, in Inverness they’ve got money to waste.