A business owner is furious after the council demanded he remove a 30ft golden gladiator statue from outside his shop after a single ‘killjoy’ complained it was obscene.
Grant Adamson, 57, said it was a ‘sad day’ when the statue of a Roman icon was taken down on Tuesday.
The vintage store owner claims visitors loved the landmark in Ince, Greater Manchester, but believed it was given the boot by council chiefs.
He claimed one man complained about the nudity which prompted a ‘planning permission dispute’.
Grant Adamson, 57, said it was a ‘sad day’ when the statue of a Roman icon was taken down on Tuesday. (Pictured: the golden nude statue being taken away)
Mr Adamson, who runs Grant’s Bulldog Forge, defended the statue and claimed ‘if it was put there by Michelangelo I’d have everybody in the world coming round looking at him’.
Since the news of the nude titan’s demise was shared on social media, users have been mourning the loss of his ‘beautifully-crafted crown jewels’ and ‘gold buttocks shining’ as they drive past.
Wigan Council said it’d been liaising with the landowner and not Mr Adamson, who installed the statue in June.
The 57-year-old from Scarisbrick, Lancashire, said: ‘It was a sad day [when it was taken away].
‘He’s not well hung, he gets a lot of chatter about the size of his manhood. I really don’t understand people who moan.
‘When I first put it up we did have a few saying ‘what’s that?’ One woman said she was driving to Wigan and all she could see was a big golden bottom.
‘I said ‘wait until you’re going back the other way’. It’s been a good talking point.
Mr Adamson, who runs Grant’s Bulldog Forge, defended the statue (above) and claimed ‘if it was put there by Michelangelo I’d have everybody in the world coming round looking at him’
‘The complaint I had was from a bloke about four weeks ago, I thought he was a shopper, he came in and went ‘that gold man, it’s obscene, it needs moving’.
‘Me and my colleague looked at each other as if to say ‘is he winding us up?’
‘There’s a lot of things that the council could be looking at rather than picking on a poor old gold man.’
He added: ‘It’s been there since June. My landlord obtained the statue from somewhere.
‘It’s been in storage for years and then he kept saying to me ‘the gold man needs to make an appearance’ [so] it appeared in June. It’s been there since June but the day when it appeared I took photos and put them on Facebook and everyone was laughing at it.
‘People have actually been inside the compound taking selfies and asking us to take photos of them with him.
‘It’s been hard. We started the business three years ago, then there was the lockdown, then we got going again then we got locked down again.
‘He’s been a tourist attraction, it’s been good for the business, people know it’s where ‘the gold man’ is.
Mr Adamson (pictured) said: ‘The complaint I had was from a bloke about four weeks ago, I thought he was a shopper, he came in and went ‘that gold man, it’s obscene, it needs moving’
‘It was good for the shop, it was also somewhere I could direct people to the shop – I could say ‘take the next left at the gold man’.
‘I’ve had hundreds and hundreds of people [on social media] saying ‘it’s out of order’ and when they’re coming into Wigan it puts a smile on their face.
‘People in Wigan are going mad.’
The landlord arranged the removal of it on Monday but Mr Adamson is hopeful it will be reinstated.
He added: ‘I’ve got one friend who comes in with his three-year-old grandson. They use the cafe in the shop and he [the child] says he’s going to ‘check that the gold man’s there’.
‘That’s just one – I have loads of people with kids who come in laughing. It looks like one killjoy has ruined it for everyone.
‘If he comes back, it’ll cheer me up and help with the business. I’m in the process of having some cups made with him on them, whatever we get off them we’ll give to Wigan Hospice.’
A Wigan Council spokesman said: ‘The council has been liaising with the landowner as regards to the need for the relevant planning permission for the statue.
‘The statue has been removed very recently, and so the Council is now reviewing its next steps in line with its normal processes.’
People on social media flooded the shop’s post with comments lamenting the loss of the statue.
One wrote: ‘I wonder if Wigan Council officials would object about the Statue of David by Michelangelo? Or maybe even some of the paintings in the Sistine Chapel or even the ceiling done by Michelangelo, plenty of nudes.’
Another commented: ‘I have lost my evening giggle to work in awe of his pert bum, he got me through some sometimes tough 12-hour night shifts.
‘Then the sight of his beautifully-crafted crown jewels on the way home. Goodbye you gorgeous, golden Adonis.’
One wrote: ‘I will miss seeing the gold buttocks shining as I drive past going to the hairdressers. He always brightens my morning.’
Another commented: ‘What’s the problem? I’m sure [the] council should have more serious things than this statue if you like it, look at it, if you don’t walk past it. It’s not doing no harm.’