Artist speaks after Chesterfield’s bee sculpture hit by fire

The artist who created Chesterfield’s bee sculpture says he is hopeful it can be repaired – after it was engulfed by flames.

Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 10:49 am

The wooden piece of artwork, situated outside the Crooked Spire church, went up in flames on Monday night.

Following an investigation, firefighters believe the blaze was accidental.

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Artist Andrew Frost at the unveiling of the sculpture in 2015.

The bee, which was unveiled in 2015 as part of a campaign to highlight the plight of the winged insects, was created by Derbyshire wood sculptor Andrew Frost

He told the Derbyshire Times: “It’s a shame to see what’s happened – but I think it can be repaired.

“It was on an exposed elm tree stump which was probably bone dry and a bit decayed – so if someone stubbed out a cigarette on it, it wouldn’t take much to set it alight.

“I need to see if I can get it to my workshop to hopefully repair it and get it reinstated.”

The bee sculpture. after the fire Picture by Chris Mallory.

Andrew said the bee has sadly been vandalised ‘quite a bit’ since it was installed.

“Its wings were pulled off a few years ago,” he added.

A spokesperson for Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service described Monday’s blaze as a ‘sad’ incident.

They said crews from Staveley were called to the fire shortly after 6pm.

“We used a hose reel jet to extinguish,” the spokesperson added.

They said firefighters liaised with Chesterfield Borough Council and studied CCTV footage but this ‘proved inconclusive’.

The spokesperson said: “We put the cause down as accidental ignition.”

Residents have taken to social media to express their sadness after seeing the ruined sculpture.

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