Angel of the North celebrates 15th birthday

Angel of the North The 200-tonne steel structure was designed by Antony Gormley

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The Angel of the North is celebrating its 15th birthday.

Set up on the site of a colliery in Gateshead, Antony Gormley's iconic structure has become one of the UK's best-loved pieces of public art.

Family events are taking place around it, including plays, a workshop and an art installation featuring flowers and plants made from recycled materials

Gateshead Council described the 200-tonne steel sculpture as an important figure in local people's daily lives.

Anna Pepperall, the council's public art curator, said that back in 1998 they had no idea what an iconic symbol the Angel would become.

"I think we always thought and hoped it would be really popular," she said.

"Many people predicted we'd have lots of visitors there.

"But if you'd said to me all those years ago that we'd be celebrating its 15th birthday like this, I'm not sure we would have believed that would happen."

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