Among the milling crowds to be found in front of the Salisbury Cathedral sits Seaview by artist Hilary Jack, an art piece installed in April drawing to people’s attention the threat climate change presents to the UK coastline, and coasts around the world.

The installation has become a divisive topic among locals and tourists alike, inspiring debate surrounding its position and appearance in the grounds of the Close.

(Image: Finbarr Webster)

The Journal has received several letters in recent days that have been heavily critical of the installation, with one ready saying that upon seeing “the pile of wood stacked up in front of the cathedral” his first thought was that “The Close had been visited by fly-tippers". 

Lin Robinson, visiting from Las Vegas, USA, told this newspaper: "Just looking at it, I think it’s ugly”. Her partner, Willy Janssens, from Belgium, said “the idea is nice".

Willy Janssens and Lin RobinsonWilly Janssens and Lin Robinson (Image: Newsquest)

But Susan Willmets, 76, from Wilton, said “I’ve seen lots of pictures in the press,” (regarding the exhibition and its controversial nature), and added: “Erosion is a serious thing.

"This world is God’s house, God’s creation, and we are ruining it,’ and that, ‘maybe this is the right place for it.”

Similarly, Laura, 45, and Adam, 33, both from Andover, have expressed their support for the instalment.

Laura said: “I quite like it, it looks like Dorothy’s house. [We are] here for it and think it’s cool."

Mark BurtonMark Burton (Image: Newsquest)

Mark Burton from Lincoln added: “I think it’s really interesting. It won’t be there permanently – it’s not here on a long-term basis.”

Iain Campbell, 39, from Scotland, agrees with the message it is sending around climate change, saying: “It’s the most relevant thing we could be talking about", and that the construction and placement of Seaview is valuable as “a way of impacting the different generations.”

Iain CampbellIain Campbell (Image: Newsquest)

Seaview belongs to a larger exhibition known as Our Earth, focusing on the impact that climate change will have on our day-to-day lives, and on lives across the globe.

Although Seaview inspires controversy among visitors of the cathedral, no matter where they’re from, it is without a doubt that the topical discussion of climate change will be brought into discussion and into the people’s awareness.

“It highlights it to make people aware,” adds David Wybrow, 57, “and people need reminding.”