Wales

Banksy Port Talbot: 'Sleepless nights' over graffiti move

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Media captionHow easy is it to move a Banksy mural?

The team working to move Banksy's Seasons Greetings mural from a garage wall have had "sleepless nights" while creating the plan.

The graffiti on steelworker Ian Lewis' garage appeared overnight in December and was sold for a six-figure sum to a gallery owner in January.

John Brandler, who is based in Essex, is moving the Port Talbot artwork to a new gallery in the town.

Dave Williams, a civil contracts manager, is in charge of the big move.

A team of specialists is attempting to relocate the graffiti from Taibach to Port Talbot's Ty'r Orsaf building.

"This is the first time we've ever moved an art piece, let alone a Banksy, it's quite a challenge, but a challenge we're embracing," he said.

"The plan we've got for lifting and relocating is a good idea.

"We're quite proud Mr Brandler wanted to keep it within the community."

Image caption Dave Williams and his team have been tasked with moving the piece

Mr Williams said they had had a "couple of sleepless nights" while coming up with the plan.

"It's very high-risk, nobody knows how strong the block-work is, anything could happen really," he said.

"I hope he [Banksy] hasn't sabotaged it and it explodes when in transit ... no more shredding moments please."

The wall on which Season's Greetings is sprayed weighs about 4.5 tonnes and needs to be covered in resin first.

The specialist resin is being applied to the inside of the garage as engineers try to set it solid so the artwork does not crack when moved.

Workers will then install a wooden framework to act as a cradle when it is lifted out of the wall.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Volunteers estimate more than 20,000 people have visited the Banksy

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