COUNCILLORS have delayed a decision on plans for a £1m sculpture dedicated to the Queen.

Plans for the 184ft tall monument on the summit of Cold Law - a hillside near Kirkwhelpington - were submitted by Lord Devonport last May.

The monument aims to provide a new tourism destination, with a viewing area, small car park and pathways accessible to walkers and cyclists as well as motorists – bringing new visitors to the area and boosting the local economy.

There will be no toilets, visitor centre or amenities, but signage will direct visitors to facilities in nearby Ridsdale and West Woodburn.

The application was recommended for approval but at Tuesday’s strategic planning committee meeting of Northumberland County Council, a motion to approve the proposal was voted down by eight votes to six. A motion to defer the decision to allow members to visit the site was passed by 12 to two.

The application received objections from Corsenside Parish Council, as well as 29 nearby residents.

Local resident, Anne Palmer, who spoke at the meeting, said: "Something which will dominate the landscape so completely should have the blessing of local people. To say it is out of keeping is an understatement."

Bellingham county councillor, John Riddle, called the monument an 'alien industrial structure.' He said: "As this is known locally as Tit Hill, I don’t think this is an appropriate location in the first place.”

Forwarding a motion of approval, Coun. Trevor Thorne said: “I think it will become a tourism asset, it will help our Discover Our Land campaign and it will bring tourists into a beautiful area.”

However, Coun. Jeff Reid, said: “I’m not sure the parking’s right and the road to get there is right. If it’s a success, it’s going to be a right pain.”