A 20ft wooden sculpture that was made to commemorate Norfolk's whaling industry is to be replaced.

The landmark at Hardings Pits Doorstep Green in King's Lynn has fallen into disrepair after 20 years of weather, vandalism and rot.

Following a fundraising campaign, plans have now been approved to replace the sculpture with a new steel design that includes a sheltered bench for people to sit on.

Eastern Daily Press: Harding's Pits Doorstep Green in King's LynnHarding's Pits Doorstep Green in King's Lynn (Image: Chris Bishop)

Harding’s Pits Community Association (HPCA) are the driving force behind the replacement and it will be one of a number of changes coming to the area this year, which was once the heart of Norfolk's whaling industry.

A bid to create a community orchard has recently been approved by West Norfolk councillors, which coincides with the area being designated a village green to protect the green space from future development.

About 34 mixed fruit trees will be planted on the eastern side of Hardings Pits.

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Eastern Daily Press: Fishing boats docked in King's LynnFishing boats docked in King's Lynn (Image: Newsquest)


Harding's Pits was once the centre of the county's booming whaling industry.

From the 16th to the 19th century, the ships which would venture into the icy seas surrounding Greenland and elsewhere in the Atlantic Ocean in search of bowhead whales were built and supplied here.

At the height of the trade, the area was busy with merchants, shipwrights and fishermen.

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Whale oil became a lucrative commodity during the Industrial Revolution and was used as a lubricant for machinery as well as lamp fuel for street lighting.

Eastern Daily Press: What the metal whale sculpture could look likeWhat the metal whale sculpture could look like (Image: West Norfolk Council)

But overfishing eventually led to the collapse of the industry and it was abandoned in the 20th century.

The 20ft high wooden whale sculpture became the centrepiece of the Doorstep Green, created to commemorate this part of the town's maritime history.

But after two decades, it needs to be replaced after becoming damaged by the elements and vandals.