TS ELIOT once predicted that the world would end “not with a bang but a whimper”.

A life-long commitment to nuclear disarmament had made me unsure whether the learned poet had got it wrong.

But those words came into my head as I returned home from Luss churchyard last week, after having bade farewell to a Luss legend, John Sinclair.

John was a local historian and a total gentleman, who served his country well during the last war as an Able Seaman.

He loved to tell of how he spent his 21st birthday watching the sun rise over Yokohama.

It was such a joy to know the man.

So I was in a pretty reflective mood as I motored back down to the Vale – and then my heart was lifted as I neared the Stoneymollan roundabout.

It appeared that at long last as if the “rack of ribs” that has masqueraded as a work of art on the roundabout since 2005 might well be ending its existence.

Indeed it looked as if some of those elongated railway sleepers, arranged in a circle like some drunken dream of Stonehenge, had given up the ghost.

The ducks or geese, as the Reporter revealed last October, have flown to pastures new, and travellers entering the National Park are now met with the unhappy skeleton of something that was never particularly impressive in the first place, and is even less so now.

Apparently this “piece of art” was chosen from 300 submissions.

Of course, we never saw the rest of them, and no one has ever pleaded guilty to being on the judging panel that selected it.

One local councillor was brave enough to defend it at the time as a work of art.

His opinion was that art is an individual thing – and that is true, but I have never met one individual who has been impressed by it.

I know it was the aspiration that something impressive would welcome visitors to the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. If that indeed was the aspiration, then it failed.

Many experts were paraded at the time to defend this absurdity; few, if any, of those who did so were local.

I am sure that those local voices who questioned such wanton profligacy of the public purse at the time of its installation will be glad to see the back of it, if indeed it is finally on the way out.

One definition of art is “human skill or workmanship as opposed to the work of nature”.

My hope will that the rotting remnants of this architectural folly should be dismantled, and that this piece of “art”, if that is what it was, be given back to nature –not with a bang, but a whimper.