THE controversial new palm tree at the gateway to Torquay has arrived.
Torbay Mayor Gordon Oliver has come under fire for sanctioning £7,000 to be spent on the new palm tree as part of a £20,000 roadworks projects at the Kerswell Gardens roundabout on the main road into Torquay from Kingskerswell.
The tree duly arrived on Monday night and was hoisted into position.
Reaction from Twitter followers of @Thisissdevon includes:
benmorby queue gardens!
JonathanPalfrey It's a bit short...
Caz_Infinity What use is another palm tree to us?! Tourists aren't going to come from all over to see a tree! I think it's disgusting how much he spent on that, that could've gone to something worthwhile like SureStart to help the town
Samboshakes Looks alright but a golden palm would more appropriate, then melt it down to make a livery collar for our beloved mayor! Pffft
MegzKellyPerry Is this what our BID money and business rates go on? What a JOKE. Should be spent improving business & the town centre.
GemMcCoy I'd like to see that sort of money spent on the town centre, looks disgusting. That's what tourists notice...not a palm tree.
philoundering I like it. Nature is the best sculptor
Ruby97765641 Huge waste of money desperately needed elsewhere, especially considering it has to be removed in three years.
torbaytowns @MegzKellyPerry No BID money was spent on this scheme. BID money is only spent within the town centre to benefit businesses
carolpowe Looks like a pineapple!
Chiclanagirl If this came from Southern Spain it is likely it also came with the Spanish beetle which can kill it within a few weeks.
AbberleyTorquay It was a ridiculous idea in the first place, and that is what it looks like - ridiculous
CllrKPTorbayFabulous. It will become iconic.
The showpiece 20ft tall potted palm will have to be removed in three years' time to make way for the new Kingswerswell bypass.
The floodlit Canary date palm has come from Spain and was craned in on Monday night.
Torbay Council says the money will come from a £100,000 Gateway Project to improve the entrance to the town.
Opposition councillors have questioned whether the money is well-spent at a time of up to £10million cuts; overspending on adult and children's services, and lack of funds for other facilities such as Brixham's Shoalstone Pool.
Some opponents went on television to voice their feelings.
The Phoenix Canariens palm is being positioned in a pot at the centre of the island. It will be lit by solar LED at night.
Herald Express readers have their say - see this week's paper