THE REMAINING parts of a former Chartist mural which was controversially demolished to make way for a shopping centre should be “returned to the people of Newport”, a councillor has said.

A new mural marking 180 years since the Chartist uprising in 1839 was unveiled in Rogerstone earlier this month, with the same design as the original mosaic near John Frost Square which was pulled down in 2013.

But while welcoming the new mural, Rogerstone ward councillor Chris Evans says there is still “a dark cloud” over the destruction of the iconic city centre original.


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Newport City Council has confirmed parts of the former mural remain in its possession, though it is unclear in what condition.

Cllr Evans said it is now time “to put things right”, and is calling for the remaining pieces of the original work to be distributed across schools in the city.

South Wales Argus:

The Chartist Mural in Newport City Centre. The picture was taken in 1978

“One idea I’ve had is issuing each school in Newport with some of the pieces so they can create a piece of artwork to display at their school,” he said.

“It would be great to see future generations creating lasting tributes whilst learning about our heritage.”

In a question asking whether pieces of the original mural are still in the council’s possession, Cllr Evans said: “It’s time now to put a few things right, will you do the right thing and work together, to return the original Chartist mural to the people of Newport?”

South Wales Argus:

The remains of the former Chartist mural

In response, Newport council’s head of city services, Paul Jones, said he has asked about the condition of the remaining pieces.

“Some parts of the former mural remain within the council’s possession,” Mr Jones said, in an email seen by the Argus.

“I have asked for an update on their condition, to ascertain whether they would be suitable for distribution to schools.”

The new mural in Rogerstone – around a quarter of the size of the original – was built by Oliver Budd, son of the artist Kenneth Budd who created the first mural in the 1970s.

Like its predecessor, it illustrates the story of the 1839 Newport Rising, which culminated in 22 demonstrators being shot to death by troops outside the Westgate Hotel.