DRIVERS travelling into England from Wales on the A5117 Deeside Park improvement, currently under construction, will be given a dramatic welcome.
A 20m long and 9m high lion will be made out of five tonnes of white stone cut into the turf of a steep embankment near the Woodbank junction.
Work is underway now and should be finished in December.
Highways Agency project manager Stephen Greenhalgh said: “This is an historic gateway between England and Wales and deserves to be marked in style.
“We have decided on that traditional English symbol – the lion. I hope it will become a popular landmark for the thousands of people who will use and benefit from the new road.”
Richard Waddell, the artist from landscape architects Moore Environment, who designed the feature said: “The Woodbank lion presents a dynamic modern image of our English national symbol in tune with a modern high speed road but with echoes of the distant past.”
The new road is about three miles (five kilometres) long.
The A5117 improvement scheme began in October 2006 and will cost £58m – £4.5 million has been contributed by the Welsh Assembly Government for the section of road in the principality while the European Union has contributed 2 million Euros because the A5117 is part of the Trans European network.
It is expected to be fully operational in December.
Its key aim is to ease congestion at three junctions - Woodbank, the A540 and the M56 as well as improving safety for drivers, equestrians and walkers.