In May 2007, Ian Ritchie Architects Ltd won an international competition to design a sculpture to be placed at the entrance to Holyhead Harbour.
The sculpture was to be:
– a tall landmark whose surfaces play with the reflection and absorption of light.
– a landmark of standing stones unmistakably of the 21st Century and of Anglesey.
– three granite menhirs of different profiles whose heights are structurally informed.
– a collective association with the landscape and place.
At the top of each Menhir there is a glass tip or a ‘free’ reflector which will be illuminated at night. A light shines towards Holyhead town centre, the Irish Sea and Dublin, reflecting the town’s maritime history and its connection to the Irish capital, while a soft glow is emitted towards the harbour.
This sustainable soft glow approach not only saves energy but also reduces light pollution.
Fibre optic cables run from the glass tip to the base of the Menhir where the light source is located, ensuring ease of maintenance as lamps can be inspected and replaced without having to access the top of the Menhirs.
At the foot of the standing stones will be a field of 21st Century baby standing stones. The Baby Menhirs become a playground for young and old alike, mapping the key Neolithic sites and geological structures on Anglesey. The Baby Menhirs encourage a human and playful interaction as visitors of all ages come to explore the standing stones and history of Holyhead and Anglesey.
The project was cancelled in 2008 owing to lack of funding.