Banksy mural removed from Folkestone shipped to Miami

The mural called Art Buff is on a wall in Payer Park in Folkestone The image was on a wall in Payers Park in Folkestone

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A Banksy mural removed from a wall in Folkestone is to be shipped to Florida where it could be sold for $750,000.

Art dealer Robin Barton said Art Buff, painted in Payers Park, will form part of a show of Banksy works at Context Art in Miami in December.

It is expected to carry a price tag of £470,000 which will go to charity.

The mural appeared in September, but a few weeks later it was defaced, and the owners removed it saying they were "no longer able to maintain it".

'Carry the burden'

Folkestone and Hythe MP Damian Collins appealed to the Godden family, which own the wall, to reinstate it, and Shepway District Council said it was saddened the artwork had been removed.

On Wednesday, Mr Barton confirmed the mural would be cleaned and restored at a secret location in the UK before being shipped to the US.

He said the work would be shown alongside seven or eight Banksy pieces which had originated in places including London and New York.

Mr Barton said the painting had been the subject of a number of attacks including one where a cartoon phallus was drawn on it.

He added that the Goddens were "no longer prepared to carry the burden of protecting the work" and sanctioned its removal to coincide with the closing of the town's Art Triennial

He said: "The artwork will carry a price tag in the region of $750,000 and all proceeds of any sale will go to the Jim Godden Memorial Cancer Trust created in memory of local businessman Jim Godden whose widow owns the wall where the mural was painted."

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