Owner says decision to move Banksy to England ‘forced upon him’ by Neath Port Talbot council
A decision to bid farewell to a mural created by Banksy which is due to be moved to England has caused controversy after its buyer claimed that it was the council that wanted it moved.
Neath Port Talbot council released a statement yesterday saying that it was ” grateful so many people had the chance to view” the artwork but that it was now a matter for its owner, John Brandler.
The owner however says that it was not his decision to move the artwork and that Port Talbot Council wanted it moved to make way for commercial space in the town.
In a statement, the council said: “The council wishes the owner of Season’s Greetings well and is grateful so many people had the chance to view it here in the time it was loaned to us. The future of Season’s Greetings is now of course a matter for Mr Brandler.”
But John Brandler said the council had approached him and asked him to move the artwork.
“Whether the Banksy leaves Wales and goes to Peterborough, or several other locations, who have expressed the desire to have it, the decision has been forced upon me by the council,” he said in a statement to the BBC.
“I didn’t instigate the removal of the Banksy, the council did and I wish them the best success for the town in the commercial space.”
The Banksy appeared on the walls of a Taibach garage in December 2018. The piece was purchased by Essex based Mr Brandler with the Welsh Government agreeing to pay for the valuable artwork to be moved at its expense to a new unoccupied retail unit in Pobl’s Ty’r Orsaf, Port Talbot, where it could be viewed by members of the public.
“That arrangement terminates on January 14th next year and we understand that Season’s Greetings is to feature in a street art exhibition in Peterborough due to start next month,” the council said in a press release.
John Brandler however said he had been told by the council he had no choice but to remove it before 14 January because “there was such a demand for commercial space” in the area.
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