A large sculpture by a renowned Chinese artist will be gifted to Macclesfield as the town strengthens its Silk Road links.
The creation, by Jian Jun Xi, is said to be of a bobbin and will be placed behind the town hall in Sparrow Park.
It is not yet known when it will arrive but the sculpture will be a celebration of Macclesfield’s place as the western end of the Silk Road by the country that is at its eastern extremity.
As part of a strengthening relationship Macclesfield welcomed students from a high school attached Beijing University of Technology this week.
They visited Tytherington School, met mayor Janet Jackson and explored the town centre – including the proposed sculpture site in Sparrow Park.
Councillor David Edwardes, who arranged the town hall visit, said: “It was great fun to meet such an enthusiastic group of young people, visiting us from the eastern end of the Silk Road.
“This is hopefully one of many visits the town will have from touring groups from China as interest in Macclesfield as the western end of the Silk Road continues to grow within China.
“The sculpture shows the links between Macclesfield and China and I’m sure it’s going to be beautiful.”
Naturally the group also visited the Silk Museum to learn about the historical role it has played in Macclesfield.
At Tytherington School students from both countries learned about each other’s culture.
It is now hoped the return visit can be made to Beijing in the near future. Chinese student Jessica Li, 15, said: “It’s great to be here, I have made a lot of friends.
“They are all kind and enthusiastic to do everything.
”We experienced a lot of courses.
“It’s a lot different than our school. The students have been so friendly, it’s amazing.”
Tytherington headteacher Emmanuel Botwe, said: “This has been a tremendous opportunity for the whole school community. Both sets of young people have gained so much from each other. We are very much looking forward to visiting Beijing soon.”