B of the Bang

b of the bang

B of the Bang was a sculpture designed by Thomas Heatherwick, in Manchester, England, located next to the City of Manchester Stadium at Sportcity. It was dismantled in 2009 because of structural problems. It was taller and leaned at a greater angle than the Leaning Tower of Pisa. The sculpture took its name from a quotation of British sprinter Linford Christie, in which he said that he started his races not merely at the ‘bang’ of the starting pistol, but at ‘the B of the Bang.’ The artwork had been nicknamed ‘KerPlunk’ by the locals after the popular children’s game from the 1970s.

The sculpture was made from the same weathering steel (also known as Cor-Ten) as the ‘Angel of the North’ sculpture, which gradually develops a tightly adhering oxide layer as it is exposed to the elements. This layer inhibits further corrosion by reducing its permeability to water. As part of the design, the spikes swayed slightly in the wind in order to withstand gusts in excess of 100 mph (160 km/h). At the time of construction a time capsule was placed in one of the spikes of the sculpture, containing children’s poems and paintings, due to be opened circa 2300. The location of the time capsule after dismantling is currently unknown.


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