EXCLUSIVE: Hundreds of thousands of counterfeit coins from Mersey tunnel booths could be turned into a public sculpture (From Wirral Globe)
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EXCLUSIVE: Hundreds of thousands of counterfeit coins from Mersey tunnel booths could be turned into a public sculpture
FAKE coins used by drivers at Mersey Tunnel toll booths could be made into a giant sculpture if plans are given the seal of approval.
Merseytravel have asked the Royal Mint for permission to commission a special piece of art made entirely out of counterfeit £1 coins.
If approved, the idea would mean Merseytravel would be free from their current arrangement of returning all fake £1 coins to the Royal Mint.
The plans are revealed in a report set to go before the travel organisation’s tunnels, ferries and visitor economy committee on Thursday.
According to the document around 89,000 false coins were collected in 2009 by newly-installed detection software. This sum fell to 81,000 in 2010 and was down to 69,000 last year.
The discovery of the counterfeit cash meant there was a substantial loss of revenue for Merseytravel as there is no compensation for detecting them.
However Wirral councillor Steve Foulkes, who is part of the committee, said he was doubtful about the prospect of turning the coins into a work of art.
He said: “I have great scepticism about public works of art and it’s a difficult subject.
“I would be concerned that anything made out of counterfeit coins may send the wrong message to people.
“But art is very much in the eye of the beholder and I will listen to what is said and the full details of the project before forming an opinion.”
Committee members are recommended to note the report and endorse the current collection arrangements at Mersey Tunnels toll plaza.