Five controversial Sunderland landmarks which no longer exist

The Ambit

The Ambit was a floating metal sculpture funded by a £250,000 grant from the European Arts council, which was designed to light up in the River Wear and give a nod to the city’s maritime heritage. The sculpture however was poorly designed, and was unable to cope with the impact of river corrosion, which destroyed its wires and cables. The Ambit was later quietly removed from the River and sold for scrap years later.

The Market Square Sculpture

Created in 1990 at the cost of £55,000, this market square sculpture represented the city by fusing Penshaw Monument and Wearmouth Bridge together. Public reactions to it were mixed, and it became laden with pigeon droppings and people sitting on it as a bench. It was demolished in 2004.

The Seaburn Fountain

The Seaburn Fountain, created in the 1980s, was an ill thought out decoration for the city’s seafront next to what is now the Grand Hotel. It was frequently attacked by young people who constantly put washing up liquid in to create a storm of bubbles all over the road. Eventually, the fountain was converted into a flowerbed, which it remains as today. However it is still known among locals as the “Seaburn Fountain”

The Roker Park Tap

A quirk of the 1980s, the Roker Park Tap was an optical illusion designed to give the appearance of a floating tap with an infinite water source. The tap was removed in the 1990s although it has never been clear why.

The Seaburn Fun Park Sign

The Seaburn Fun Park, now a carpark next to the Leisure World arcade, was a Seaside fair ground which closed a few years ago. Its multicoloured sign was an icon of the seafront. However, with the park having stood empty for years it became a divisive landmark amongst residents who both mourned its passing or called for its removal. Needless to say, it no longer exists.