A decision to grant Grade II listed status to a landmark Chesterfield sculpture has been welcomed by Chesterfield Borough Council.
Historic England has decided that the Hepworth sculpture called Rosewall – or Curved Reclining Form – should join 40 other postwar art pieces to be protected.
The sculpture, which is on Future Walk at West Bars, was bought by Chesterfield Borough Council from Royal Mail in 2009 when the artwork was in danger of being sold and moved out of the town.
This was made possible following donations from the Art Fund, Chesterfield Waterside Partnership, Strata Homes, Gladedale (South Yorkshire), David Wilson Homes (North Midlands), Barberry Chesterfield Ltd, Taylor Wimpey plc and Barratt Homes East Midlands.
Councillor Terry Gilby, deputy leader of Chesterfield Borough Council and cabinet member for planning, said: "I have admired this statue since I was a child. It is undoubtedly the most important work of modern public art in the borough, and possibly even in Derbyshire as a whole.
"The fact it has now been listed vindicates the campaign backed by all political parties to keep the sculpture in the town when it was in danger of being sold.
“Through our Per Cent for Art scheme many partners came forward with funding so we were able to ensure it remains something that residents in Chesterfield can enjoy on a daily basis.
"I hope the fact Rosewall is now Grade II listed will encourage even more people to visit it."
Dame Barbara Hepworth's 2.5 tonne sculpture has been in Chesterfield since being bought in 1963 by the then GPO, now known as Royal Mail. While she made many sculptures Rosewall is one of only four stone carvings Hepworth produced before she died in 1975.
Rosewall forms part of the Chesterfield Art Trail, which showcases public art around the town.