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13 November 2014

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You are in: Suffolk > People > Features > The Aldeburgh Scallop: Have your say!

Maggi Hambling, sculptor

Maggi Hambling

The Aldeburgh Scallop: Have your say!

Maggi Hambling's scallop sculpture on Aldeburgh beach is still causing hot debate! What do you think?

Close up of the Scallop (photo: Mark Ward)

Close up of the Scallop (pic: Mark Ward)

The sculpture is dedicated to Benjamin Britten and the site has attracted plenty of visitors since Scallop was unveiled in 2003.

While many are appreciative, there are those who don't like it and some who like it but feel it's in the wrong place.

This is your chance to tell us what you think.   Post your comments below. 

last updated: 12/02/2009 at 15:47
created: 08/11/2004

Have Your Say

The Aldeburgh Scallop - tell us what you think!

The BBC reserves the right to edit comments submitted.

Spent ages looking for it last summer; there'd been so much controversy we were sure it must be in the middle of town. In the end we were pointed in the right direction by the tourist office!We were pleasantly surprised, in spite of having seen photographs of it. We can see that it's not everybody's cup of tea. But we liked it very much. (Much more than most modern sculptures, with one of which it's already been compared.) It's clearly no amateurish effort, and a great deal of thought has obviously been given to it. But if you really hate it, you surely don't begrudge it beach space? There's lots more along the Suffolk coast.We take our hats off to the designer, and particularly to the apparently local craftsmen/engineers who made it.
Kay and Ivor

I think this piece provides a really striking interruption to a very dull bit of the coastline; Aldeburgh has its interests and it has a fascinating line of buildings down the main street, but its beach suffers greatly in comparison. The shell gives it focus, it draws the eye and asks questions; it pulls the viewer towards it and does not disappoint at close quarters. Aldeburgh should be proud of it, and those residents that say they hate it ought to take a good hard look at themselves - too reserved and conservative for their own good
Jim Kelly

I loved this work, having seen it this weekend for the first time. I went back twice to see it in the different light. It is perfect in that spot and wonderful to see people use it in different ways - kids scrambling, oldies sitting,some taking pics etc. Wonderfully accessible to all - GREAT!!
Alice Coyle

It's fantastic
Margaret Heatley

i have to research it for my art homework and it looks amazing
will brewer

I think the sculpture is fantastic and is in a good place. I've just re-visited it and it really adds an interesting dimension to the beach, especially in the lovely light at dusk.
Christine Cook

I love it. Very suitable. Adds interest to a rather boring beach. Thank you.
frances bates

It's a masterpiece dedicated to one of our brilliant composers and could not possibly have been located in a more appropriate setting. People of Aldeburgh, if you want visitors to your town, don't move the Scallop...I came because of it and will come again.
David Williams

Beautiful..Tactile...Inspirational..Love it. Want one. Plenty of rural space for any spare pieces you don't have storage space for Maggi!
Geoff Milner

Scollop is a fine piece of public art. It may have brought controversy to the town of Aldeburgh but it has also created discussion and passion which can only bring a community closer together
Nevina Williams

I am a sculptor myself,and I wish I'd made it .It'wonderful.Lot more beautiful than the eyesore that is the power station.
Julie Hamlett.

How can anyone think Maggie's sculpture is in the wrong place? It is a wonderful work of art, very serene and beautiful standing alone on the beach. An inspiration!
Angie & Brian West

I think that the Scallop on Aldeburgh beach is great! I feel that it fits in well where it is, and plus it attracts the attention of vistors. I now believe that the sculpture is Aldeburghs "landmark" if that makes sense. The scallop is beautiful and whoever doesnt like the sculpture needs to get over it! I love Aldeburgh!! Its one of my favourite places to go.
Keely Bowes (16)

I think it is absolutely beautiful. Please don't move it from where it is because my mother's ashes are under it - she loved Aldburgh!
Wendy Rochefort

I saw this sculpture for the first time this weekend - I thought it was absolutely breathtaking.I will be travelling back to Aldeburgh from London to see it again in another season.
Shelley Bott

Haven't visited the sculpture yet, but don't think it will faze me! Just want to find Paull Bidewell again! Peace man & Love xx
jenny chuter

I can't see what all the fuss is about. Saw the Scallop for the first time last week and quite liked it. It is placed on an otherwise non-descript part of a shingle beach with no intrinsic charm.It(the Scallop) enhances the whole area.
Tony Pearce

i love climbing on it, jumping of it and hiding under it
bethany foster age 8

A beautiful structure on the beach, even with children using it as a climbing frame! Later in the day with the absence of children it looked serene.
david howell

One of the few pieces of modern sculpture where I can say that it moved me. So different from most of the rusting heaps of metal going under the name of modern art!
Penny Maag

I think sizewell power station is a 'huge wart' in a beautiful place.The shell cannot be compared to that surely?!I know Maggi Hamblings shell is a focal point of great interest and every time I see it; I am pleased.I also love the photographs of the scallop by Ria Tosh - very beautiful way of catching the light on the metal. Well Done all. A.L.
Abigail Lee

Beautiful and inspiring. Definitely enhances the beach and is in a perfect position.
Clare Lennard

Not sure about the location but at least in keeping with a beach scene and artistic. More than can be said of the "Angel of the North"

I was very lucky to have the opportunity to visit Aldeburgh last week ,How anyone can not be moved by such a handsome and dignified work rising out of the pebbles with the moody Suffolk sky as a backdrop is astounding ,!Lets hope BB has a great view of it from his cloud ,Well done Maggi Hambling .

The Scallop is a fantastic addition to our chores and the interaction children have with it/on it and under it makes a truly integral part of our visits to the town. Human activity, particularly the artistic kind, should be celebrated when it gives us pause for thought and play.

It's OK! My first time seeing it in the flesh was Sat 19-4-08 on a gloomy, cold, windy day.Ugly profile as you approach from the town, like a deformed rearing slug! but up close it's a nice piece of work. Must be lovely if viewed on the same side as rising or setting sun. Hope to see that one day. Don't re-site it. It's almost not staring in anyone's face where they live, only a car park and an empty field opposite to feel insulted by it at the moment!Britten, his friends and his work are probably too intellectual for me, and I probably wouldn't enjoy his work, but there could be far worse memorials than this for a local high achiever.
Mrs Ball

Beautiful. Magnetic. A work of art to be celebrated. How can it be in the wrong place?
Shaun Wild

suzanne Hall

Love it.I live in Nottingham, but hope to visit it one day

We think this sculpture is absolutely fantastic. So tactile, so incredibly formed and love the wording. Perfectly apt in the perfect setting.
Grant and Liz McPhee

I think the sculpture is brilliant!

I regularly visit Aldeburgh and always make a point of walking the beach between the Martello Tower all the way to Thorpeness in doing so i pass the scallop it is i feel an interesting piece, which does not detract from its wonderful surroundings, I feel those that obviously live in the town should be more disappointed with the amount of rubbish that is left from those that fish from the beach and from those who allow there dogs to use the beach as well as craig path as one big toilet
Mr A Marshall

Three years ago my wife Ellen and I visited Suffolk which we liked very much. When we visited Aldeburgh it was cold and overcast but we decided to walk along the beach as I was aware that the climax to M R James' ghost story, "A warning to the curious" had been set there. On a cold and bleak day our spirits were immeasurably lifted when we came upon Maggi Hambling's sculpture. There was no presented explanation or anyone around to tell us why it stood there but the shape, location and the quotation pierced around its edge were absolutely right for the location and all the more moving for that. Ellen died very recently but the memory of that sculpture was a pleasure to her even towards her end.
Brian Booth

I have just seen the scallop on BBC 1, I love it a beautiful piece of artwork set in the perfect location..Don,t be disheartened maggie its terrific!!! would love to see would certainly attract visitors and open interest to other sculptors work..
Dawn Ross

I think Maggie Hambling's sculpture is imaginative and and makes a natural statement,I am sure Benjamin Britten would have found it interesting,
MR.John Tasker,

I think it's beautiful, and in the right place
Grace Moore

This is the most fabulous piece and its rawness is entirely fitting to this long flat stoney stretch of coast. I absolutely love it.
Wendy Rochefort

I think it is wonderful!Where better than by the sea,it is strong and dramatic and romantic and how lucky the people of Suffolk are to have this Shell.
Sue Formston

Excellent, we need more public sculpture in the UK and this is an fantastic example.
Nigel Rumsey

wow i love its amasing im doing g.c.s.e art and i might take up some ideas on this it really good and very eye catching..!

As a local resident I believe that the sculpture would have caused much less offence had it been placed either at Snape Maltings or close to the Moot Hall. It is like a huge wart on a beautiful face, and should be removed!
Dawn E H Rosher

Most of the comments about the Scallop are missing the point. It may be beautiful, but since when can an artist just choose to place they work in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty? This gorgeous stretch of beach now has hoards of cars (I wonder if possible revenue from car park swayed the council at all?),people, burger vans in high season, even a guy selling kite surfing gear. It may be a fine work of art but it certainly does NOT 'improve' what was previously a beautiful, unspoilt spot and one of the few, we naively thought, that would not be affected by the constant 'in-fill' that can be seen in every little quiet corner of Aldeburgh.

I have just returned from Aldeburgh and discovered that the sculpture had been vandalised AGAIN! Unfortunatly, I am not a fan of it and feel that it is ugly, especially when looking up the coast. However, I do feel that it would nicer to have it in the centre of the village for example rather than on the beach. Although I am not keen on it, graffiti is not going to solve the problem!

I regularly visit Aldeburgh, and I think that this sculpture is eccentric and magnificent. However, I was passing through a few weeks ago, and i found that someone had graffitid it, very sad.

I think its a fantastic piece of art! just what we needed.

i like it. I would much rather see this than some mangled piece of metal or paint splattered on a canvas, that people call "modern art"!
Lauren Nelson

Beautiful, just love it
Shirley Croft

I love and appreciate this beautiful,mystical work of art.As a singer of Britten,with a long association Suffolk from childhood both having a Suffolk father and as a performer ,I have to say it enhances the area with its powerful statement and memorial to Britten.Britten truly described the sea with his music as Crabbe had described the local inhabitants in his poem The Borough earlier on.Maggie Hambling has created something much finer than any "bust" of Britten could ever be and has added a haunting silhouette to this magical coast line.That a representation of a shell could be out of place on a beach is beyond me and as a memorial to a composer who really put Aldeburgh on the map and loved this coastline -represented by Maggi Hambling a Suffolk artist could not be more fitting.The power of this sculpture needs to be seen in the flesh.For me its in the right place and hopefully now the graffiti and shameful desecration will stop and the local people will afford it the respect it deserves.Or had Crabbe got it right about the small-minded attitudes of some of the locals?! I wonder.
Helen C

Interesting!! but certainly out of place, it should have been at Snape Maltings.Judging by watching reactions of visitors recently, most haven't a clue as to what it's supposed to be or in whos memory it was created & placed on the shingle.
Mr R J Hunt

Thought the sculpture was brilliant in its own right. You would have to know it was dedicated to Britten, to the uninformed nothing about it tells you so.
Geoff Harrison

We are regular vistors to Aldeburgh and think the Scallop Sculpture is truly wonderful. How pleased must Maggi Hambling be that her work of public art provokes such debate. Sedate Aldeburgh should be pleased they have something so exciting that adds to the Towns heritage.
Mark and Teresa Stanton

This is a most beautiful, uplifting and remarkable piece of sculpture which Aldeburgh people are extremely fortunate to have. A visit to Aldeburgh is incomplete without touching and being inside the Scallop. Wonderful.
Penelope Watson-Farrar

Absolutely beautiful! I saw it for the 1st time last week - totally entranced by the setting too. Wonderful addition to Enlish coastline.
Chris Saunders, Kent

I think the Scallop is just BRILLIANT. Peace and love surrounds it. Thank you Maggie keep creating
paull bidewell Leiston Suffolk

Ive been to aldeburgh on a school trip and i thought the scallop was going to be tiny but it is huge i think the scallop is a lovly scupture and i would like to see it again
Jack Ambrose

We just got back from a day hiking the seashore and we saw the magnificent is BEAUTIFUL! And it is in a great spot!
Christy and Isabelle Boyd

It's amazing
Holland K

we think the aldeburgh scallop is great and shpuld stay where it is
harriette and chelsea


I think it is a good piece of art work and i like the idea that it commemorates the composer Benjamin Britten. But i think it needs to be in a more remote area.
Mr Kon

we love the sculpture it is fabby
sazzle m nazzle + betha

Went to Aldeburgh for the first time recently as I have always loved Britten's music - I thought the sculture was beautiful and very moving - especially the inscription - 'I Hear The Voices That Will Not Be Drowned'. As the scallop faces out to the sea and is just along from the Lifeboat Station and fishing boats bringing in the lobsters this seemed especially poignant - and also that the nuclear reactor is just visible in the other direction!(By the way the graffiti has gone). I am sure Britten would have loved it and preferred it to a sculpture of himself. I keep looking at the photos I took of the scallop and enjoying memories of my visit to Aldeburgh - hope to go again!
Alison Gardiner

It's brilliant. This is what modern art should be. The setting and the inscription are a tribute to all those lost at sea as well as to Britten.

This wonderful sculpture, so modern and so beautiful in such a raw setting, I found to be most moving. Perfect
john napleton

I think it is beautiful and it's position is perfectly apt. I is close to where Britten grew up and lived
liz beeson

I am from Suffolk and I feel that the scallop sits at odds with the shingle beach landscape on which it sits. Scallops just aren't associated with a shingle beach and that is where the problem lies.
Adrian R

i was born in aldeburgh 1938 i think its horrible and i think benjamin britten would say the same it would have been much nicer to have had a statue of himself
ted thorp


Well i used to live in suffolk and its the best people who says its rubbish it isnt i agree with peter that they need to get out more and go and have a look xxx
Leandra Clayton

All the people who say it is rubbish need to get out more. Presumably they're the sort that watch football, buy daily newspapers and believe what they read in them.

Maggie Hambling's work looks better in the flesh than it does in pictures, and really enhances the beach. Its a pity some totally mindless prat sprayed graffiti on to it over Christmas. If caught he should have his hands chopped off as is done in arab countries.
Peter V

Have been to visit the Scallop three times now, all in Feburary when the beach is empty and the wind howling and it is beautiful. It sits just 'so' with the sea and the landscape. I sit looking out to sea and being blown about and felt at one.
Heidi Hart

We think the sculpture and the site is wonderful. We keep visiting and discovered Aldeburgh as a result. Have also explored other works by her as a result.
Paul and Karen Caldwell

i like it
jan terry

although i have never seen this sculpture but isnt it a nice sight just to see something beutiful

have been going to aldeburgh for the last 6 years - as often as possible and remember when they put it there. I personally like it, It is one of a kind, it is modern but also traditional, Although this is a quote from benjamin britten, every time i read the words on the shell i think of the sailors and fishermen who have ended up in davy jones locker - i love it - keep it
kyra meeke

perfect forits environment - very peaceful abd beautiful
betty ellis

Finding this wonderful piece of art-work on the beach gives me the same feeling as when that perfect pebble or shell finds me and says 'Take me home!'
Mary Davies

Maggi's sculpture is brilliant. Congratulations to her and Pegg's for their work. In my opinion, however, it is in totally the wrong place. It should be near the lifeboat house leaving the open area as it always was -open! It is a great attraction and generates money for the council through the carpark - so they obviously want it in it's present location.
Michael Hockley

A perfect dedication to BB and what better place to put a shell than on a beach. I love it.
Janet Carey

We have just visited the sculpture along with our three young children and they loved it. It provoked all sorts of questions about who made it, why and how did it get there, what did it say and what did it mean? All from two 5 year olds and a 7 year old. We then came home to look up pictures on the internet, so a learning experience too. Long may it stay.
Josie K

Just saw the sculpture today for the first time. Lovely low autum sun....strollers on the beach all considering and commenting...couple taking a picture of their toddler on it...even my 84 year old Mum liked it. Chatted to a woman who was also persuing for first time, and we both remarked how lovely it FEELS too. Art that engages people is so rare. Bet that in 50 years time locals are fiercely loyal to the piece.
Annie Moreton

On a recent trip home to Colchester, my dose of Aldeburgh fish and chips and Adnams Broadside was perfectly rounded off by seeing this wondeful addition to the Suffolk coastline. I afraid the closed minded "!!How can you possibly call a lump of metal shaped like a scallop art??!! " sentiment is worldwide and I suspect such people would have difficulty recognising art if they stumbled accross a priceless masterpeice. We had a series of very interesting civic sculptures recently removed in Tucson because of a loud ignorant minority. PLEASE do not allow this to happen in such a model English place.
David Holding, Tucson, USA

Excellent piece of art. Always go down town Aldeburgh not only to see the scallop, but to feel the steel it's constructed of. The person who really captured the full 'glory' of this scallop is Takumba Lawal (Ria Tosh) on a stack of beautiful postcards. Please check them out!
Daisy Pickering

Ab fab! It really is in the correct place and highly appropriate.
robbies and ritchies

Beautiful, and appropriate for a seaside town. Strange that more than one person that wrote of their dislike in previous postings could not spell the word "son". Phillistines indeed!
Margaret Brown

I think the scallop is wonderful. As for it being in the wrong place - do the complainants feel that it interferes with their view of Sizewell B? You only have to see the number of people tramping across the shingle to view it to realise how remarkably popular it is.
Debby Sutcliffe

Remarkable how many Philistines there are in such a smallish village. Probably Maggie Hamblins best work! Beautiful and apposite!
Richard Snowball

As a landscape architect, I expected to resent its intrusion into a natural landscape. Contrary to expectations, I was thrilled by the perfection of this setting for it and by the subtlety and intricacy of the sculpture. I loved the perforations along the rim, but would have preferred just holes instead of words.
Victoria Berryman

we are very lucky to have this brilliant artist in our midst,,,, she has excelled again with the Scallop
betty lakey

I think its brilliant, its extremely well designed, and a joy to look at. its a great sculpture, and im doing an alevel product study on it!
Laura Riches

I think the sculpture is a metaphor for Aldeburgh...

Provocative, impressive and exquisite..........daub it as much as you will with paint or pomp, it,s like chucking horse-**** on a rose bush, it,ll make it stronger. Hooray!
James Stoddart

Fantastic Sculpture and it MUST stay where it is.
Andrew J Bell

If Richard has a 5 year old who can produce beautiful sculpture like the scallop he is on to a real winner. Sadly it seems unlikely and just another example of ignorant predudice against anything slightly out of the ordinary. The scallop is beautiful and totally at home on the beach.

Everything she creates is profoundly moving. She is a gifted and exotic artist.
Catherine Cairncross

In response to: "my 5 year old sun does that sort of thing at his school"... I'm very glad your son is learning welding skills on 10-tonne pieces of iron at such a young age, this is surely a great reflection on the modern education system. In all seriousness, I think it's very well presented and very though-provoking, and really cannot understand the controversy.
Rick Cuthbert

I think it's really good. Well built and not offensive in any way. It's a shame so many people have to be so negative to an otherwise well thought out and well positioned piece of art. I don't like a lot of modern 'art' sculptures but feel that this is being given undeserved criticism.
Tom Cuthbert

It's ok and better than most of her work. I went to see Nicola Slattery's exhibition at the John Russell Gallery in Ipswich and found that much more interesting. It depends on what you like. For me it's about emotions and moods. Slattery paintings have both and leave somthing for the imagination to play with. The scallop is just a scallop!

I think it's beautiful, a piee of truly interative art - and a pity that the esteemed residents of Aldeburgh are so troubled by its' presence - largely because they weren't consulted on its' location! Ah boo sucks!
Caroline Howlett

!!How can you possibly call a lump of metal shaped like a scallop art??!! my 5 year old sun does that sort of thing at his school, not saying that there is something wrong with that but we want something of a little more complexity! Art is supposed to require skill, I'm afraid Hambling's art just has none. I went to an exhibition of her paintings in Great Glemham and they were just grey canvases I though the wall was more interesting. Benjamin Britten needs something that requires more skill to honour him, as if that was hounoring me I'd be ashamed.

Rubbish, rubbish and more rubbish. Couldn't the money have been put to a better use????

I didn't like it at first but it has certainly grown on me.

We think it is very nice and intresting.
Ryan and Sophie from Ipswich

From the last week of May Maggi will have a website.

my definition of art is the production of a piece of work be it dance, music,painting,pottery or sculptor that others would have great difficulty in replicating. it seems to me that maggie's work is outstanding enough to be in such a class
derek sudlow

The scallop is a viable and interesting piece of sculpture. It's position is perfect. those who vandalise it and question it's siting are simply concealing a hatred of modern art and a facile wish to have all art a picture of "pretty things". The natural view that it spoils incidentally contains Sizewell B and the House in the Clouds (a twee altered watertower). May it long offend the fogeys who wish that the last 100yrs of art did not exist.
david bevan

please can you tell me if maggi has a web site.

it looks out of place but is that not what effect maggi hambling was going for. live it, it would be a shame to see it go thanks xxx

It upset me to hear that this beauitful scallop has had horrible things said about it.. I think this is a very beauitful scallop of a shell by the waters edge, it's very peaceful looking. It also shows how all bits of life can be turned into art.. I was so taken by this scallop that i decided to write my Art Essay on this sea bed creature.... Fantastic!! :) Ally
ally weaver

i can t wait to see it.the photos look amazing.
valerie thompson

we think its amazing and a beautiful piece of art!
julie and caitlin cornwell

wow! visited for the first time yesterday with my family. we all found it magical
Martin Devenney

I think it is amazing...powerful...evocative...beautiful...I don't understand all the fuss. Aldeburgh dont know how lucky they are!!
alison veness

Love it! x
Nancy Howlett

Maggi will be signing her new book at Hadleigh library on Sat 11 Feb from 11am - 1pm. Go talk to her....

Addition to my last e-mail: to prove my total sincerity in my love for Scallop, I wrote the e-mail with fag in hand and can of Super Lager on the side!
Kathleen Duffy

I love it - and so would Benjamin! It just goes to show that even if you live amongst the most beautiful art it doesn't mean you appreciate it! Maybe those folk who hate it should pick up a seashell and listen to the music of the universe.
Kathleen Duffy

love it

The Scallop has received it's final accolade surely ... the other night it was a question on "University Challenge"
Michael Richards

Totally brilliant and utterly beautful - any person considering this an eyesore should be committed!
Jacquie Cunningham

Disappointed to learn of repeated vandalism, but also that the nimbys are trying to use that as an excuse to get scallop re-sited at Snape Maltings. In case they have never left Aldeburgh, the Maltings is not on the coast & has no equivalent sea-scape setting for it. Shame that the philistines of Suffolk don't know a good thing when they see it, but must vandalise or reject it. (Naming no one, but please, gentle reader, "if the cap fits, you may wear it")
Lynne, Ipswich

i haven't even seen it and can tell of its beauty whilst looking at some fine photos by Ria Tosh. Will have to wait on my next trip to UK tto plan a visit.
Jack Balchin

Beautiful rising from earth, could be climbed on

Scallop has done what any piece of art should do - create an interest, be it positive or negative. Maggi has proved the people of Aldeburgh with an exciting memorial and they should be very proud. After all, was BB perfect?

i think the sculpture is beautiful and brilliantly placed. since seeing a picyure of it at school recently i have decided to base part of my A level art course on the sculpture because i think it is so fantastic! i honestly don't understand how anybody could object this incredible piece of art.
sian o'neill

Our whole Suffolk coastline is littered with concrete blocks and seawalls and metal groins, all in the name of sea defence. This sculpture is far more attractive than any of that, and I think objectors need to get a bit of perspective on life, what's the big deal?!
Rachel, Suffolk coast

Depending on your position in relation to the sculpture it can be seen as an extension to the seascape, an interesting juxtaposition to the House in the Clouds at Thorpeness and the Sizewell power station, a view inland towards the marshes, or if you stand at the bottom of the shingle you only see the sky, and finally a view towards the town along the beach. It looks very comfortable amongst the seaside version of sweet peas, kale, etc. and as you walk towards it the scale is not at all dominant or intrusive. The children enjoy it too and have found a way of creating sounds with the pebbles running down and through the sculpture. Something for everyone!
Christine H. Haniford

I live in West Cork and I am considering a trip over to see it, amazing, she has vision! a perfect place to site it
trish thompson

I thought it was wonderful. on the right sort of scale for the beach and the sea there.

Oh dear the philistines are out in force again. I left Suffolk 21 months ago - thank God - but I see the debate is still raging. In my opinion the sculpture is magnificent - the right design in the right place. These miserable cretins should be delighted with what they've got - heavens knows there's little enough culture in East Anglia and I speak as an East Anglian born and bred. Happily I now live in my adopted area, the north, where there is more culture and more access to it. Tell the philistines to go and boil their heads. Maureen A Jeffs
Maureen Jeffs

jim mason

I think it looks fantastic and most appropriate for the setting. However, my view is based only on television and internet viewing and I long to see it in the 'flesh'.
Mel Steer

I loved it Chris
Chris Buckell

My family and I come to Aldeburgh throughout the summer months and more besides, we have a caravan at Church Farm. We often come over to the beach and whatever the weather, time of day, we always wonder at the Scallop. We think it is fantastic and would be extremely sad for it not to be there. We are far from art critics, but enjoy the fact that it is there and for some reason it always seems like we've "come home" when we turn into the high street after a 2 hour drive over to Aldeburgh. Barry, Susie, Penny and Josh.
Barry Day

Dear Alan.I'm not a chinless wonder or a okay yah type.I'm a Welder and a sculptor who is sad to the core that i couldent help to build such a work of real art.My regards to the metal workers who made Maggi's dream come true,for that is what it is.A DREAM IN THE REAL WORLD
Martin harrison,essex

Saw this sculpture pictured on 'Picture of Britain' and thought how beautiful it was and how it fitted in with the landscape so well - couldn't wait to see it for real. Visited Aldeburgh last May and was totally stunned - took loads of photos and bought souv. postcards. Lovely to see the children climbing on it doing no harm at all. I'm incensed that someone would want to vandalise something so wonderful. Great tourist attraction in a lovely town, however at £9.25 I think that the commemerative mug was far too pricey! Hope to visit again next year.
Melanie Darke, Bath

This is a great piece of artwork - any public sculpture sufficiently open and inviting to have children scrambling over it gets my approval. Hopefully the discovery of art in the landscape by today's children will mean that future generations are less resistant to it.

We (family of five) think its marvellous to have a huge, semi-abstract sculpture that can be touched, stroked, walked around and climbed on. Fully appreciated by all ages in our family (2-44). A beautiful text and all in sympathy with its environment. We do live in Thailand and visit Suffolk once a year so only get to pitch our picnic next to it about three times a year. But the postcard image is a fixture on my Thailand desk.
Clare Gaylard

We visited the Scallop for the first time last week and were so impressed with it. If it were moved into Aldeburgh town centre it would be lost and so lose its impact. What a shame there are people who have to spoil things for those who appreciate art - in all its forms!
Anna and Richard Mayes

It's stunning - leave it alone!
Harriet Richert

It's great and in the right place

I think it blends in really well with the surroundings and attracts plenty of attention. I wouldn't have thought there were enough 'local' people to complain. As a regular visitor to Aldeburgh and Thorpeness I think the amount of empty '2nd homes' stand out more than the Scallop does!
Colin, Kesgrave

Good piece of sculpture but in the wrong place!

It is beautiful and dramatic and sums up Britten, the sea and the peace and solitude of this wonderful coastline. The inscsription is very moving. These criticisms perhaps reflect more on the people of Aldeburgh than on the sculpture and its unique and totally appropriate position.
Antonia Austin

It is a superb sculpture and appropriate for the setting. We should support it and Maggie Hambling.
Sarah Purbrook

I think it is awful and rather silly.

I have visited this site regularly, can't see why those who object to its siting do so. It is not in anyones way, its isolation attracts walkers to the area. Let it be!
John Cooper

We had heard of it before visiting, but had not planned on our children loving it so much. We visited it 3 times in a single weekend at their insistence. Their favorite part of what was a great family w/e.
Mark, London

I love the scallop, if they dont like it at Aldeburgh can we please have it on Hayling Island, you should see the monstrosity they have planned for the gateway to the Island.

Personally i love the scallop because it is a great piece of art and its good to eat chinese under when it is raining.


Dramatic and makes for a real focus on the beach. It obviously draws in the tourists so if i were a local business I'd be all for it.
Stuart Ayling

Fantastic, such an appropriate piece for the place.
David Etherton

This is the most perfectly sited sculpture I have ever seen. It stands in its own right as a masterpiece of art: beautiful from every angle, with curves that mirror the landscape and harmoniously reflect the ever-changing light of the Suffolk coast. Beyond all this it stands as a wonderful memorial to Ben Britten and all he did to raise the human soul from the mundane (yet beautiful) natural world to the heights of artistic understanding and appreciation. Aldeburgh is famous because Ben Britten and associates reached out to the world and attracted what is best in the world to Aldeburgh. Maggie Hambling's sculpture echoes this ethos as it sits solidly on Aldeburgh beach looking out to the wider world across the sea.
Prisca Furlong

art is life id rather see the art work than some tourist resort.
marcos from australia

I think its absoluely wonderful. People of Aldeburgh should be proud. It is exactly in the right place not cluttered by anything else
Hilary Lay

An eyesore!! It should be removed from this site at least.

I think the scallop is a lovely piece something to head towards when strolling along the beach , the kids race towards eagerly.
carla mcmcahon

I think it is great - a most appropriate art work in a wonderful and empty setting. What is all the fuss about? This part of the beach is underused and the sculpture draws visitors to explore Aldeburgh further and discover its bleak beauty. Be proud of it!
sue robinson

It is a fine way to completely ruin what was a beautiful stretch of unspoilt beach. It should be sited about three miles further east.
Trevor Mason

When we got curious enough we went to Aldeburgh and went in the direction we felt it would be ie towards the South of the town where all the parking is. When we eventually found it it was nearly in Thorpeness on a lovely stretch of open beach. Sorry, it's in the wrong place, which is what all the fuss is about apparently. The beaches are lovely anyway so leave them alone. Quite a nice sculpture though.

I love the Scallop and I think it gives intrestas driving along the coastal road.I think it fits in perfectly with the scenery andit hink its greatt that children enjoy it too.
Emily G

Art is for everyone! and while some may not appreciate it the majority will view it with the respect it deserves, as a true sculpture conceived and built to entertain and share with the visitors and locals of Aldeburgh.
James Peck

I always visit aldeburgh, since I live quite close. I absolutely love this sculpture and I see nothing wrong with its position. I couldn't find it on the beach at first because its such a natural blending colour, a mix of the shingle and the dark sea. I enjoy sitting on the shell with some friends and watching the sun come up. We've taken some amazing photos of us on the shell, it attracts many people. I love it, its very interesting and I don't believe its an eyesore. Its another feature of the coast, just like the house in the sky at Thorpness.

I have visited the site and viewed the Scallop. I feel it is exactly what was required of it. It gives the Spirit of Suffolk and is an outstanding sculpture, situated in the best possible spot. There were a number of small boys clambering over it, which is a pity, but thy do not seem to be harming it - it's strong enough to withstand their efforts!
Tony Cridge

I think the scallop is excellent and fits in with the landscape.

I visited Aldeburgh at the weekend and having heard of Maggie Hambling's sculpture decided to see for myself. It was stunning and perfectly in tune with its beach setting. Maybe it just takes time to "settle in" to its environment and be accepted (like the Angel of the North) Rejoice Suffolk. This is a masterpiece.
David Brazier

Evocative and beautiful

Where else should a shell sculpture be, than on a beach? The sky constantly gives it a different image. I thinks its lovely.
Marian Read

I wonder how many of the people making comments on here are from the local Aldeburgh area. I also wonder if they are of the chinless wonder okay yah type that tend to gravitate to the locality. I live not far away n think it looks like a heap of old corregated junk dumped in an otherwise pretty location. Very sad. Im not over keen on Britten or his music anyway, but do appreciate good classical music. Take it down to the local tip where it would fit in nicely.

As a one off its ok,its not pretty,its interesting and obviously practical,weather proof and importantly,vandal proof. Thumbs up from me.
david Chapman

I think it is fabulous and I am mystified as to why anyone should think it is in the wrong place.
Liz Woods

I didn't know the Scallop was there and it was a really great surprise. It is excellently conceived by Maggi Hambling and executed by Sam and Dennis Pegg. I will go back again and again to see it in different lights. I wish that I lived nearer. A much more imaginative tribute to Benjamin Britten than a statue could ever be, conjuring up Peter Grimes
John Jenkins

The scallop is truley inspiring,and a well placed.It is a wonderful sight against the wide east-anglian skies.
robin hart

itlooks horrible
alex couling

I saw the Hambling sculpture for the first time yesterday, on a perfect English summer's day. I was moved beyond words by its beauty. My first impression, from afar, was a of a sea bird. But how skilfully Hambling has moulded various sea symbols - shell, bird, sail - into an evocation of the spirits of the wind and sea. The inscription - written in air and light - is a defiant affirmation of the power of the elements and the timelessness of the spirit. The voices of this beautiful sculpture's admirers will not be drowned and will grow in strength.
Richard Frostick

rubbish! !
andrew packham

Personally I think it's wonderful - at least it's sea-related!
suzanne millen

I think the shell is absolutely wonderful, and enhances the view! Britten would have adored in his wanderings along the sea shore. He would probably have been inspired to write a cantata about it too.
Kris, Canterbury

A typical British response. If Maggie Hambling was a native of any other (civilised) country she would be lauded to the skies. But in a nation of shopkeepers et al, well, what can you expect? (Suggestion to the townsfolk of Aldeburgh: Why not build a wall around yourselves, keep all visual art away and stand with your faces towards the cold, unfriendly North Sea?)
Philip Edwards

From the photograph alone, I think it looks beautiful. Organic and dramatic against the sea and the beach. Cannot tell about the location just from the photograph, but suspect a degree of philistinism from some who would hate anything that is different and imaginative and demands a free mind. It reminds me of rock outcrops of Dartmoor, Scotland, Ireland dramatically designed by nature that take one's breath away at first sight. By the way, why are people pronouncing 'scallop' wrongly. Should be 'o' as in hot. Consult your dictionary. But perhaps this is being as boringly pedantic as those who object to the sculpture!
Mary Fallon

it looks really cool

i think it is really beautiful we should have a sculpture on every beach
joanne ball

Wow - what a wonderful sculpture - lucky Aldeburgh to have such a gem.

Wonderful, moving (the quote from Grimes) and utterly original just like Britten, and Maggie is a national treasure too!
Simon Biazeck

i think it should stay because its in a shell shape and you find shells alot at sea
james fletcher

a fantastic work in a beautiful suffolk setting.maybe view it in person one day.
brenda peers danna

I am often in Aldeburgh and in my opinion the Scallop is an eyesore. It should be recycled as soon as possable.

People who complain need to get a life!
Sam Hunt

Wow! I think its a wonderful piece of work! Me and my friends had loads of fun, climbing over and having photos next to it, eating chips and having fun! I say; leave it where it is - its a brilliant tribute.

I first saw the Scallop when I stayed in Aldeburgh with my husband and two friends in March 2005 and we loved it. I took my Mum from Southwold and my Aunt from St Albans today and they thought it was great!

It's remarkable piece of structure in stainless steel but it should not be placed on a beach which is an AONB. It was intended as a memorial to Benjamin Britten and it should be placed in Aldeburgh which was his home town.

I am not a modern art buff, Damien Hurst and the like don't float my boat. However, I think this sculpture is fantastic, wonderfully imaginative from a distant or up close you really get a feel for what it is trying to portray. The words etched on it are thoughtfully chosen and I feel it fits perfectly into teh landscape. I think its great that people explore it, partciularly children, with gives the chance to explain its history or find out more about whom it was dedicated and erected for
Lynsey Davis

this is one class piece of work, coming from another sculptor, if they dont appreciate it, send it to Galway

I think it is truly beautiful. From a distance it looks a little uninspiring, but once you get close it is fantastic. It's very tactile and is situated in just the right place. It's a real asset to the beach and I can't understand all the detractors. Well done Maggie Hambling for a dramatic and unique piece of sculpture.
Mo, Woodbridge

I am a B.A. degree student in Fine Art and am doing research on contraversial large sculptures and lacal response to them. i signed a questionaire on the beach last year could you tell me more about it and the outcome? thankyou
Ann Robson

It belongs on the beach listening to the sea. It is now a tourist attraction and should not be moved. It takes the eye away from awful vision of Sizewell. The Scallop is stunningly beautiful and belongs where the artist intended it should be.
Jane Learmonth

i think the scallop is a brillient peice of work and i dont no why people think that they have the right to deface some thing that someone has taken a long time to make.

What is the fuss?!Sizewell A and B powerstations are hardly less visible.The scallop certainly has some beauty and is well placed on this open expanse of shingle.Why be concerned?the sea will claim this object well within geological time.A small point;the scallop is hardly typical of East Coast sealife,why not a herring!,or a disgarded cod's head!It's also a good object for children to climb over.
Kirk Brown.

How much better, and how much less aggrevation, a traditional statue of Sir Ben, errected in the town, would have been.The only sensible way to commemorate anyone, witness the many that grace our towns and cities UK wide.
Roger Sykes

i think that the sculpture is a wonderful piece of art work and gives a some what bland stretch of beach real character. it is a shame that some pompus old people have to be so down about it. it is a breath of fresh air and brings a slightly modern feel to the suffolk countryside.
mikaela bailey

I think the shell is in exactly in the right place. It is in the middle of an otherwise bleak bit of beach and it has a car park near by. It is a great tourist attraction and is bring business to local shops. We went just to see what all the fuss was about and could not understand why people were moaning it was in the wrong place.
Pauline Crofts

I was in Aldeburgh a few times this year, but the Scallop eluded me. Pity, as the photos make it look quite atmospheric.
Jack O, London

The scallop is great why do people make such a fuss when we visted it didn't spoil the veiw from my dads house and theres more to aldeburgh than fish and chips shops and i hope it will be admierd by turists.

I am a Leiston ex-pat living in the North East and as yet I haven't seen the Scallop. I will make an effort to see it when I next visit. Remember, the Angel of the North was ridiculed when it was first erected but now the place wouldn't seem the same without it. Give the Scallop a chance to grow on everyone
Chris Bonham

it is the best thing in the world its wicked

The Scallop is beautiful. When you look along the shore from the car park, to the left there is Sizewell, to the right there are rusty fishermen's sheds. Look ahead and there is beauty! Leave it where it is.

Went to Aldeburgh specially to see the sculpture and make own decision. Loved it - much more interesting than a statue of a person in a public square, and very useful for sheltering from the wind!! In a few years time I am sure it will be a much-loved local landmark and everyone will wonder why it was ever disliked by some people.

it looks like the mangaled remains of a corrugated roof. It's a complete heap of absolute rubbish... and furthermore, how anyone can possibly see it as a tribute to anyone is quite beyond belief. It is more like an insult to Benjamin Britten. What madness has overtaken those who see this as a sculpture..of any kind! I beleive the artist has had a laugh at everyone else's expense.
Linda Britton

I saw it and wondered why people are making such a fuss it's excellent.

People who say it spoils the view are daft..of what for goodness sake..Sizewell Power Station..give me a break..if we have to have an enormous shell on the beach its fine where it is....
Paul Jenkin

i think its lovely and a credit to maggie hambling and sitting close to the sea is were it should be !!!!
Liz Graham

l think it is wonderfull ;you can just stand and admire;or small children can play on it.You can even ignore it..
david walsh

I think the scallop is a very beautiful piece of work and I am sure would have been appreciated by BB. The recent addition of an explanation board by the pathway is a great help to explain its purpose. I am very sorry that the snobby and NITBY attitude of some Aldeburgh residents is not so supportive.

Ugly and totally inappropriate it its present location.
Mike Oakley

i think it is a very nice scaulpture and the fact that it should be somewhere else, where may i ask i have heard locals want it in the library, how many shells you seen in the library gardens
anon, thorpeness

I thought the scallop was entirely appropriate for Benjamin Britten and in the right place but please Aldeburgh clean up around it and make it a delightful visitor feature . At the moment there is no thought given to making it a pleasant area in which to sit and view also the path down to the sculpture is badly kept and lots of mess around. The sculpture is beautiful; sadly the area surrounding it falls short of this aspiration.

My family and I visited the Scallop during half term and would like to have taken a photo but there were children climbing all over it! However, this didn't spoil our first impression of the sculpture which was that it was in a good place - there was plenty of parking and space. It wasn't spoiling anyone's view from their home or shop of the sea. It also helped entice the 'tourists' from one end of the beach and realise there's more to Aldeburgh than fish & chip shops!
Julie Duggett

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