Taxpayers in South Wales have been told of the enormous expense their local police force has paid for a sculpture. It has been reported by WalesOnline that the £75,000 sculpture is the largest sum paid by any police force in the United Kingdom in the past five years. The 60ft stainless steel sculpture, which cost the same as four new recruits, is currently housed outside the Cardiff Bay station.
Local art critics have referred to the sculpture as ‘a stainless steel thingy’ and we reiterated the point that police stations are for basing officers and detaining criminals and not acting like a local Tate modern.
The sculpture was £24,000 more expensive than its nearest rival. Northumbria police spent £51,000 on steel and glass sculpture, whilst Cleveland spent £25,000 on photos in Hartlepool and the Metropolitan Police spent £13,000 each on commissioner portraits.
A year ago, we went to the polls to elect Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC). Their job is to protect our interests and you would have hoped the local PCC, Alun Michael, would have seen what a waste of money this is and put a stop to it. Surely it is time for public officials to start using taxpayers' money for its intended purpose; in this case protecting the public. Better accountably is needed with public finances and more scrutiny is required to stop this non-essential expenditure.