THE owner of a popular Lakes tourism business believes that a proposed statue of Alfred Wainwright should be built in the Lake District mountains, rather than a high street in South Lakeland.

Last week, The Westmorland Gazette revealed plans to build a bronze statue in Kendal as a tribute to the legendary fell walker, writer and artist.

However, Mark Weir, of Honister Slate Mine, said the statue should go on the top of a Lake District peak and become the area’s answer to the Angel of the North, or as he called it, ‘The Alfred Of The North.’ “I appreciate Wainwright lived and worked in Kendal but his heart and soul was in the middle of the Lake District mountains,” he said.

“If you are going to build a statue to him, don’t make him a pigeon roost in a town centre. Build it in the place he loved, where people can appreciate what he stood for and have to put in effort to go and see. Considering his passion for the fells, to put him in a town would be a travesty.”

The proposal has spurred a lot of interest, with letters flooding into The Westmorland Gazette offices this week.

Most of the writers have opposed the plans, saying Wainwright was a very private man and would not want a statue.

However, Eric Robson, chairman of The Wainwright Society, believed that Wainwright would have been proud to have had a statue in his honour, but he would certainly not have wanted it on the fells.