THE mermaid sculpture proposed for the Black Middens is lovely, but wrong for the Tyne.
Copenhagen had good reason to site the now iconic Little Mermaid.
It is a tribute to the eponymous fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson.
The north east has no such tradition.
There are also plenty of copies or similar mermaid sculptures dotted around the world, but these are either subject to copyright disputes or are sited with good iconic or folkloric reason.
The Tyne has no such folklore or reason to have a mermaid sited on the Black Middens.
If we want the north east to stand out and celebrate its uniqueness, then let’s create something original and not a pastiche of other’s folklore and traditions.
Or, if we wish to copy something, then let it be the Angel of the North, pictured, but certainly not Newbiggin’s barely visible and bland Couple.
The idea for a sculpture on the Middens is visionary, but there is little flair in copying.
If we are determined to mark the grand entrance to the Tyne, then let’s open it up to competition and thought rather than rely on a copy, however sincere that may be.