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Folkestone Channel Tunnel entrance chosen as possible site for Brexit monument

By Matt Leclere

A monument to Brexit could be built in Folkestone with the Channel Tunnel its most likely destination.

The brief, drawn up by a new architecture school in Paris, is welcoming entrants from around the world to submit designs for a monument commenting on Brexit.

The Paris School of Architecture has launched a competition to build a monument on the “particularly loaded political issue”.

The monument is proposed to be built on land overlooking the Channel Tunnel
The monument is proposed to be built on land overlooking the Channel Tunnel

It suggests the ideal place for the monument would be at the entrance of the Channel Tunnel in Folkestone or the French side at Coquelles – or at both.

Entrants can also submit designs for an architectural structure or piece of public art with a €20,000 (£17,500) grant to build it.

The prize is subject to entrants gaining permission from landowners and the local planning authority – Shepway District Council – but could be built at the school in Paris if they cannot get permission.

The monument brief explains the designs are intended to discuss “the themes of lost European co-operation”.

A statement from the school, which takes its first students next September, said: “The competition site is, in some sense, at the discretion of the entrants.

“The constraints to this are that the monument, or monuments should be visible by passengers travelling on the Eurostar service between the UK and Continental Europe and should be positioned near to the entrances to either or both tunnels.

“As part of our 2017/18 research theme discussing the infrastructural implications of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union, the school has launched an international architecture competition entitled ‘Brexit Monuments’.

“Eurotunnel (providing rail services connecting London to Paris and Brussels), constructed between 1988 and 1994 is an important example of European infrastructural co-operation that emerged from a political ideologue that appears to become increasingly distant, or even impossible to imagine today.

“Brexit Monuments proposes an architectural engagement with this particularly loaded political issue, a monument to Brexit, located next to the Channel Tunnel entrances in either – or both – France or the UK.”

The brief says proposed locations should not be owned by the British or French states or Eurotunnel, adding: “There are a number of private landowners, predominately agricultural, that would be more suitable.”

It flags the Angel of the North near Newcastle as an example of where “architectural object become landmarks adjacent to transport infrastructures”.

Do you have a possible design? Send it to kentishexpress@thekmgroup.co.uk

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