PLANS have been submitted for a 55m sculpture - created by a Somerset artist - in tribute to the Queen on remote Northumberland moors.

The Elizabeth Landmark: Ascendant is proposed to stand on Cold Law, a hill near Kirkwhelpington on the Ray Estate owned by Viscount Devonport, which he wanted to create in honour of her years of public service and the Commonwealth.

Somerset sculptor Simon Hitchens won the competition to create the huge piece of public art - which will stand three times higher than the Angel of the North.

The piece will stand north to south and tilt so it points to the sun at its zenith on Midsummer’s Day.

A slither of earth will be taken from the ground so the artwork would fit exactly into the ground if it was ever lowered back down to the surface.

It was hoped the steel structure will attract visitors to the remote corner of north Northumberland, and will feature a small viewing area.

Mr Hitchens, who recently helped unveil a war memorial he created in Buckland St Mary, said: “It is a beautiful and rugged landscape and whatever I put in and on that needed to respect it and be born of it and celebrate it.”

He was thrilled to work on a project of this size, he said, adding: “The chance to make something so large was enormously daunting at first, I couldn’t think beyond 10m.

“It took me weeks and weeks of walking around the landscape to see what it required.

“I hope what I have come up with is almost an elegant, subtle intervention.”

Northumberland County Council will consider the plans later this year.

"There are lots of features that reference both our Queen and The Commonwealth, not least the name of the sculpture," said Mr Hitchens.

"The number of fins on the sides of the sculpture, for example, stands at 94; if and when the sculpture is built in two years’ time, the Queen will be 94."

Yeovil Express:

Simon Hitchens, left, unveiling his Buckland St Mary war memorial last year

Although the sculpture may resemble a giant sundial from a distance, the Somerset artist said you will not be able to tell the time. Instead, Ascendant has a different trick.

He added: "What is interesting is that the gnomon (the part that creates the shadow, which allows us to tell the time) of sundials in the Northern hemisphere typically face North, yet Ascendant faces South.

"For this reason, the sculpture wouldn’t be expected to work as a sundial.

"I have deliberately marked out various sections of the circumnavigating paths that surround the sculpture in reference to key dates throughout the year.

"So, if you were to stand on the relevant section on the Queen’s birthday, for example, there will be a shadow directly where you stand for that day only.

"The shadow will, of course, move and so there will also be marks for the sunrise and sunset of the solstices, plus the two annual Equinoxes."

Within the shelter and viewing area, there will be a Commonwealth flag laid into the paving, featuring 40 quadrilateral speers in a nod to the fact that Queen Elizabeth II is the 40thmonarch to ascend the throne since William the Conqueror in 1066.

Despite taking the headlines, Simon will not be working alone on The Elizabeth Landmark.

He said: "The biggest tie to The Commonwealth will be working with fellow creatives, writers and poets in order to place text somewhere within my design."