Bike racks outside a tube station are now “public art” according to the council.

People have claimed it was difficult to lock more than one of two bikes securely to the metal objects, which were constructed outside Turnpike Lane station.

Now, Haringey Council have said that they were always intended as an artwork, rather than being badly installed – but that people are welcome to lock their bicycles to them.

In response to a constituent’s question, the council said: “The recycled bike racks have now been installed not to be used as cycle stands. The works have been implemented to the agreed design as a piece of public art.

“If cyclists wish to lock their cycles to them it is at their discretion.”The response was posted on twitter and has been derided by some members of the public.

Nicholas DaCosta from Bounds Green said: “It is bizarre, and not useful for what the area needs, but rather than fixing them they are being redesignated as an arts installation. The area doesn’t need that, it needs bike racks, and they are part of an active lifestyle

“It seems similar to the rebranding and new logo, a complete waste of public money. Rather than come up with a solution, they have done something no-one wanted.

“There was no discussion of artwork being put up on Turnpike Lane. You wouldn’t walk into the Tate and lock your bike to a piece of art. It is strange and frustrating. Mistakes happen in any job, but they must be fixed properly.”

He said that they are nearly unusable as racks as they are too close to trees, are at an awkward angle, and often only the front wheel of the bike can be attached, raising the risk of thefts.

Alex Wood from Noel Park said: “Somebody needs to be fired for this. Haringey & TfL invested millions in regenerating the area and the job is clearly not finished.

“The bike racks are a joke and the lights they installed in the trees aren't even turned on. It's simply not good enough."

A Haringey Council spokesman said: “Following public consultation about making a range of improvements to Wood Green High Road, it was agreed that old bike racks should be recycled to create a decorative feature at this location.

“This playful art installation comes in addition to a number of new bike stands and better cycling facilities to Haringey, and we remain committed to further cycling improvements to encourage more local people to get on their bikes.”