Manual Ref* NFnrNOR040 Show 4 images 179

Public Sculpture - Rouen Road

County Norfolk   District Council Norwich City Council 
Civil Parish or equivalent Norwich City Council  Town/Village* Norwich 
Road Corner of Rouen Road and Golden Ball Street 
Precise Location In front of Prospect House (ECN building) 
OS Grid Ref TG233083  Postcode NR1 
Previous location(s)  
Setting On Building  Access Public 
Artist/Maker Role Qualifier
Bernard Meadows  Designer(s)   

Commissioned by

Eastern Counties Newspapers 

Design & Constrn period

Commissioned 1968 

Date of installing


Exact date of unveiling

29 April 1970 


Abstract Animal Architectural
Commercial Commemorative Composite
Free Functional Funerary
Heraldic Military Natural
Non-Commemorative Performance Portable
Religious Roadside, Wayside Sculptural
Temporary, Mobile Other  

Object Type

Building Clock Tower Architectural
Coat of Arms Cross Fountain
Landscape Marker Medallion
Mural Panel Readymade
Relief Shaft Sculpture
Statue Street Furniture War Memorial
Other Object Sub Type: Architectural sculpture

Subject Type

Allegorical Mythological Pictorial
Figurative Non-figurative Portrait
Still-life Symbolic Other

Subject Sub Type

Bust Equestrian Full-length
Group Head Reclining
Seated Standing Torso
Part Material Dimension
Base  Concrete  H. 2.5 metres L. 6 metres W. 60 cms 
Largest golden ball  Bronze  Circ. 4 metres D 90cms 

Work is

Extant Not Sited Lost


Eastern Counties Newspapers 

Listing status

Grade I Grade II* Grade II Don't Know Not Listed

Surface Condition

Corrosion, Deterioration Accretions
Bird Guano Abrasions, cracks, splits
Biological growth Spalling, crumbling
Metallic staining Previous treatments

Structural Condition

Armature exposed Broken or missing parts
Replaced parts Loose elements
Cracks, splits, breaks, holes Spalling, crumbling
Water collection Other


Graffiti Structural damage Surface Damage

Overall condition

Good Fair Poor


No Known Risk At Risk Immediate

Description (physical)

Jutting out on a concrete plinth at the top of the flight of steps leading to the main entrance of Prospect House Public Sculpture dominates the junction of Rouen Road with Cattle Market and Golden Ball Streets. The concrete base supports a small golden ball squashed under another strip of concrete which supports the largest of the series with a further three set further back between two concrete blocks. 

Description (iconographical)

Prospect House was completed in 1970 to house the offices and printing presses of Eastern Counties Newspapers. The architects - Yates Cook and Derbyshire - adapted the idiom of the new brutalism in their treatment of the concrete panels set over the steel frame. Bernard Meadows had begun his career as one of the sculptors who, according to Sir Herbert Read in 1952, had developed the ‘geometry of fear’, discussed under the entry for Bernard Reynolds’ Triple Mycomorph of 1953 see under Ipswich, Christchurch Mansion. Meadows had continued in this vein during the early 1960s before developing a new idiom, again under the influence of Henry Moore, most notably of sculptures like the Locking Pieces of 1963-64, now displayed at Vauxhall Bridge Gardens. Beginning with his Pointing Figure with Child of 1966 (BM 105) now in Churchill College, Cambridge and in two versions of Help (BM 102 and 103) both of 1966, one of which is in City of Bristol Art Gallery, Meadows turned Moore’s forms into enigmatic dimpled balls which are squashed between larger shapes. Public Sculpture combines this element of Help with a large Golden Ball, apparently liberated from the weight of the rest of the structure in response to the adjoining 'Golden Ball Street' and the large gilded sign of the Woolpack public house, then just around the corner. The idiom of both the building and the sculpture is very different from the earlier offices for Eastern Daily Papers at 3-7 Redwell Street by the same firm in 1958-59. The building is decorated with a plaque celebrating Frances Burges and the publication of the first English provincial newspaper the Norwich Post on the 6th September 1701 (NFnrNOR191) 


Date taken:  16/12/2005
Date logged: 

Photographed by:
Sarah Cocke

On Site Inspection

Date:  15/8/2006

Inspected by:
Richard Cocke

Sources and References

Bowness, A., Bernard Meadows: Sculpture and Drawings, London, 1995, BM 115; BOE I, 305; Barnes, Richard, The Year of Public Sculpture, Norfolk, Kirstead, 2001, 42 


Date entered:  10/10/2006

Data inputter:
Richard Cocke