STATUES commemorating the "Pioneers of Powys" could be placed on the Newtown bypass roundabouts if a vision becomes reality..

That's the idea from Peter Webber the Chairman of Newtown based Cellpath and Ann Evans Secretary of the Newtown Local History Group.

They believe that statues of textile manufacturer and social reformer, Robert Owen, fashion designer Laura Ashley, the father of mail order sales Sir Pryce Pryce-Jones, and industrialist David Davies Llandinam, should be placed on the roundabouts that go from one end of the bypass to the other.

Ann explained: "It was discussed as part of presentation given to the Severn Valley Effect in 2016, but the problem is that we're running into political roadblocks and are wondering how to get this project taken seriously."

Peter explained that the idea comes from having seen sculptures and statues on roundabouts all around the world, including Hemel Hempstead, from where he relocated his company to Newtown, in the early 1980s.

He said: "I've been reading about naming the bypass in the paper and think - this is actually a better idea."

"In Blackwood at the bridge you have a chartist statue, in Hemel Hempstead you have the Phoenix Gateway sculpture and in Barbados you have cricketers commemorated.

"This is a way of showing the world the spirit of adventure that we have here.

"These are great people who all come from the area and we should be proud of them.".

"If we don't do something different and a bit special it the bypass will jist be the same as all the others.

"This would make it unique and celebrate the completion of the bypass and our greats, the pioneers of Powys."

Peter also believes that public funding would not be needed for the project.

He added: "Pryce-Jones invented Mail Order, look at Amazon, Robert Owen is the father of the Co-operatism, we could approach the Co-Op, I'm sure we can get the funding for these statues from companies, we're not looking for public funding."

Ann added: "We need to create a brand identity here, the statues would create interest and place for people to visit, or else the bypass will just become a thoroughfare through Mid Wales and people drive to the coast.

"This is going to be our only opportunity."

The idea will be discussed at the next Full Meeting of Newtown and Llanllwchaiarn Town Council on Monday, June 25.

Last week Newtown's Cllr David Selby's motion to try and have the bypass named after Robert Owen

wen was backed by Newtown bypass.

A petition, asking the Welsh Government to name the bypass after the 600 year old Brimmon Oak which will be online until July 2 currently has 191 signatures.