Workmen dig up Francis Crick statue ahead of opening up Abington Street to traffic

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Workmen have this afternoon begun the process of moving the Francis Crick statue ahead of planned work to repoen part of Abington Street to traffic.

Workers were spotted working on the statue shortly after 1pm on Tuesday and the Chron has been told they are under instructions to move the statue to a spot a short distance away at the bottom of Wellington Street, near Marks & Spencer.

The iconic statue was installed at the end of Abington Street seven years ago at a cost of £100,000, which was funded by the Lynn Wilson Foundation.

The 25ft structure was designed by Lucy Glendinning after her design was chosen by a panel which included Francis Crick’s relatives and Northampton councillors.

A spokesperson for Northampton Borough Council said: “Workers are currently on site looking at the Francis Crick Statue to prepare it for its removal as part of the plans to open up the middle section of Abington Street.

“The statue will remain within the town centre and its proposed new site is being checked as a suitable location before an announcement is made shortly.”

A prototype model of the crick statue resides at Northampton School for Boys and Sir Michael has said the original brief for the statue design includes a pledge that it should be for the people of Northampton.

Sir Michael Griffiths, headteacher of Northampton School for Boys, said it should remain in the heart of the town.

Brian Dickens, a cousin of Francis Crick has said he would like to see the ‘double helix’ statue moved to Northampton’s Market Square when Abington Street is opened up to traffic.

Mr Dickens, who runs Dickens Brothers, in Kettering Road, said he had been contacted by Councillor David Mackintosh, leader of Northampton Borough Council, to ask his view on where the statue should be positioned if it has to be moved.

Mr Dickens said he had told the council leader he wanted the statue to be where it was most visible.

Mr Dickens said: “I am concerned the statue may be moved to an office building or the university campus where not many people will see it. It should be in the town centre and the most obvious place would be the Market Square.”