Work to move the memorial sculpture down Abington Street and relocate it outside Marks & Spencer and Tesco began yesterday (Monday).
The sculpture was removed yesterday for cleaning and in a few weeks will be placed in a new prime location as part of the work to reopen Abington Street to traffic.
The sculpture was placed in Abington Street in 2006 and was funded by the Lynn Wilson Foundation to commemorate the life and work of Francis Crick – whose work with James Watson lead to the identification of the structure of DNA - in the town where he was born.
Called ‘Discovery’, the statue consists of two life-sized figures, each standing on six-metre high, curved steel plinths.
Northampton Borough Council has discussed the move with the Lynn Wilson Foundation, and written to members of Francis Crick’s family.
Now the statue has been moved, work will continue with the reopening of the middle section of Abington Street to one-way traffic between St Giles Terrace and Wellington Street. The scheme will include parking bays, loading and dropping off areas and the road will be reopened by Christmas 2014.
Cllr David Mackintosh, Leader of Northampton Borough Council, said: “Re-opening Abington Street to traffic will increase footfall and give a new lease of life to that part of the town centre. I am proud of Northampton’s connection with Francis Crick and pleased that we have been able to keep the statue that commemorates him within the town centre.”