Permanent chicken-themed art to be installed on famous Ditchingham roundabout
- Credit: Nick Butcher
They were the talk of a north Suffolk town, receiving much national attention but now their memory is to be immortalised with the hatching of a new artistic project.
The so-called 'chicken roundabout' at Ditchingham, near Bungay, now sadly lacks its famous fowls but Bungay's Black Dog Arts (BDA) group have plans to make it a celebrated landmark once more.
The arts group plans to install a permanent chicken themed piece of art, called the Chicken of the East, on the roundabout to commemorate both the chickens and Gordon Knowles.
Mr Knowles was well-known figure in the area, as for more than 30 years he took the chickens under his wing, rising at the crack of dawn each day to walk two miles to feed the roundabout's feathery roadside residents.
In 2016, BDA organised a successful chicken art trail in 2016, which saw 53 brightly painted wooden chickens placed in shop windows and other spots around Bungay for people to find.
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And now members of the arts group, which was formed ten years ago, have commissioned a permanent installation on the roundabout to commemorate the chickens - who were a regular feature at the roundabout for decades before being moved on, when the land around it was developed in 2010.
Marlene Jervis, chairman of BDA, said: 'We just decided it seemed an appropriate time to do something with it being ten years since we started and with this year being the Chinese year of the rooster.
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'It is important as a lot of people locally remember the chickens quite fondly.'
However, not wishing to count their eggs before they had hatched the BDA asked for and received initial approval from Ditchingham Parish Council and the Highways Department for their plans.
Full planning permission will be sought when a design has been chosen so BDA are now inviting artists to put forward proposals for the chicken related artwork to be installed on the roundabout.
BDA are also seeking sponsorship from businesses and members of the public who would be like to see the roundabout become a national landmark once again.
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