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Plans approved for ‘Blackie’ art sculpture in Halewood

by Jonathan Kearney

Knowsley Council has approved plans for a new piece of public art in Halewood in memory of Blackie the war horse.

The artwork signifies the importance of the sacrifice of Blackie and other animals during wartime.

Blackie was a horse in service with the British Army during the First World War, serving in the 275th Brigade Royal Field Artillery ‘A’ Battery – 55th West Lancashire Division.

He was the horse of wartime poet Lieutenant Leonard Comer Wall, who requested that if he did not survive the war, his faithful horse be buried with his medals. Lieutenant Wall was killed in action at Ypres while riding Blackie on 9 June 1917 at the age of 20.

Blackie died in 1942 aged 35, at the former RSPCA site in Halewood, and was buried in accordance with Lieutenant Wall’s wishes.

The public artwork will be sited close to Blackie’s Grade II Listed gravestone in the area of public open space fronting Baileys Lane, opposite the residential properties of Comer Wall Way.

The plans submitted by Miller Homes, who are developing the wider site as part of the East of Halewood development, include artwork set on a redwood timber plinth anchored by a concrete base.

The planned artwork depicts a picture of a black horse with hills and purple poppies, sited around 8 metres from the Grade II Listed gravestone, which is enclosed by two hedgerows.

The East of Halewood development includes the delivery of approximately 1,300 high quality new homes, green open space improvements and investment in infrastructure and local services.