Banksy: Great Yarmouth council calls in conservator for removed mural

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Banksy artworkImage source, Banksy
Image caption,
Banksy painted the mural as part of his "Great British Spraycation"

A council that covered up a Banksy mural amid "sensitivity" to a girl's death is hoping to restore and move it.

The piece, showing children on an inflatable dinghy being flung in the air, appeared last month on a wall in Gorleston, Norfolk, near to where Ava-May Littleboy, three, died in 2018.

She was killed when an inflatable trampoline burst on the beach.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council has commissioned a conservator to restore the work.

It is considering whether it can be moved to an art gallery.

The matter was discussed at a council meeting on Monday evening, the Local Democracy Reporting Service said.

Image caption,
The council said it "fully appreciated" local circumstances would not have been known by Banksy when he painted the now-removed mural

The artwork was one of 10 left by Banksy in Norfolk and Suffolk during his so-called "Great British Spraycation", with the first appearing on 6 August and others discovered in subsequent days.

But it was swiftly covered over by workers who were "aware of the local sensitivities" surrounding the death of Ava-May, from Lower Somersham, Suffolk.

Trevor Wainwright, leader of the council's Labour opposition, asked whether the "valuable" piece of art could be brought "back to life" at a less sensitive location.

Paula Boyce, in charge of the council's Great Yarmouth and East Suffolk UK City of Culture 2025 Bid, confirmed it had "commissioned a conservator".

"They've already visited the site to have a look at how to fully restore and reclaim the painting," she said.

The restoration work was currently being costed, she said, but added: "We do believe it would be worthwhile taking it off the wall and conserving it and putting it on show in a public gallery somewhere."

The council has not yet confirmed when the work might go ahead.

Image caption,
The Banksy artworks created so much interest, many had to be protected with plastic covers or barriers

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