Removed Banksy taken from boys' club to Bristol Museum

  • 17 April 2014
  • From the section Bristol
The artwork was removed on Tuesday afternoon
Image caption Youth club leader Dennis Stinchcombe (pictured right) temporarily held the work of art in his club

The Banksy picture at the centre of a row over ownership has been moved from a youth club by police and taken to Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery.

The piece, showing a couple embracing while checking their mobile phones, was taken from a council-owned wall by the club's leader, Dennis Stinchcombe, shortly after it appeared.

He said he had wanted to raise money by auctioning the piece for up to £1m.

The city's mayor George Ferguson said Mr Stinchombe had made a mistake.

The museum announced it would go on show from 10:00 BST on Friday.

The museum tweeted it would be on show "once we have cleaned the spiders, wasp nest and dirt off".

A donation box for the boys' club will be next to the piece in the museum, it added.

Image caption The artwork first appeared on Banksy's website on Monday

Before it was taken from the club, Mr Stinchcombe, who removed the work from the wall on Tuesday just hours after it had been discovered, said he hoped to raise £100,000 for the struggling Broad Plain Boys' Club by auctioning it.

He said he had since received an offer of £1m for the piece, and losing it from the club "broke his heart".

"How often do you see a million pounds walk out of your club?" he said.

Image caption Police viewed the removed artwork at the boys' club on Wednesday before taking it away

Bristol's elected mayor George Ferguson said: "As far as we know it belongs to the city.

"What's important is that it's available for everybody to see.

"I believe street art is street art and that's where it belongs, but in the interim we now have the panel back from the club and it's in the hands of the police.

"I think it was probably a mistake to wrench it off the wall.

"I'm delighted that Dennis has made a tough judgement call and has turned over the artwork to us, via the police."

He said he will be asking Banksy if he can provide a limited-edition print which could be sold in aid of the boys' club.

"This hopefully will represent a win-win for everyone."

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