'Kes' statue could be erected before the end of April, opposite author Barry Hines' former home

A SCULPTURE to honour author Barry Hines and his most famous work - Kes - is expected to be in place by the end of this month.
Tribute: Sherry Hollings opposite Barry Hines' former homeTribute: Sherry Hollings opposite Barry Hines' former home
Tribute: Sherry Hollings opposite Barry Hines' former home

The development, which has been planned for some time by Barnsley Council, has been welcomed both by Sherry Holling, who is standing as Labour candidate for the area in next month’s elections and Cllr Nicola Sumner, who is standing down as a Rockingham councillor.

The ‘Billy and Kes’ installation, created in an evocative silhouette style, is to go on a site opposite the writer’s former home in Hoyland Road, Hoyland Common.

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It is expected that work will start next week on a concrete plinth, which will raise the metal artwork above ground level, with the metal sculpture proposed to go in the following week.

Evocative: An impression of how the Kes statue will lookEvocative: An impression of how the Kes statue will look
Evocative: An impression of how the Kes statue will look

It will stand in a small area of green space, at the junction with Stead Lane.

The area is steeped in significance for Hines’ work, with a blue plaque on his former home, to mark its place in literary history, and close to a fish and chip shop, most recently named Caspers, which appeared in the film Kes, in Princess Street.

Sherry said: “I am incredibly pleased we are getting this statue and I know everyone is going to enjoy it.

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“It may even bring some tourists into the area, which would be good for the village.”

The movie became a British classic which helped promote future stars including Brian Glover and Lynne Perrie, as well as Dai Bradley, in the starring role.

Cllr Sumner said former ward councillor and deputy council leader, the late Jim Andrews, had been a keen advocate of getting the statue as recognition for Hines and the area.

"We knew we wanted it in Hoyland Common and there was a discussion about where it should go but Jim, knowing the area so well, knew exactly where it should go, on the green opposite the blue plaque.

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"It is such a shame Jim is not here to see it as I know it meant a great deal to him.”

The sculpture is made from steel, protected with an anti-vandal finish.

Barnsley Council’s Urban Centre Projects team made the cash available for the installation. They work to promote Barnsley’s smaller communities beyond the town centre.