Coventry city centre is a city centre, comprised of several interlocking post- war facets, realised over a thirty year period. This later addition The Bull Yard, the work of Arthur Ling and Terence Gregory, city architects and planning officers 1963-69.
It incorporates pedestrian walkways, retail, civic and car parking facilities with a crowded unease and grace. Much of the original detail survives, though not unusually, some more recent additions detract from the integrity of the scheme.
The site is graced by two major works by William Mitchell – the concrete facade and interior of the former Three Tuns public house.
And the sculpted panels on Hertford Street.
So we are left with a series of spaces that now seem slightly adrift, particularly the City Arcade, as both the earlier and more recent developments in the city compete for clients and customers.
To explore is to discover a work continually in progress, or regression, as the forces of heritage, commercial development, and civic planning pull each other this way and that.
There is an initiative for redevelopment for the area yet to find a satisfactory resolution.
Take a look.
Up on high we find Sir Guy and the Dun Cow by Alma Ramsey 1952.
Coventry Point architects: John Madin Design Group 1969/75
The Peeping Tom head and shoulders sculpture is currently located in Hertford Street, mounted high up over the entrance to the covered walkway. It was originally a public house sign. It is not known who made it. It was displayed sitting in the top corner window of the Peeping Tom Public house which was on the corner of Hertford Street and Bull Yard, not far from where it is now. It was moved when the road was being redeveloped in the late 1960’s and early 70’s.