Wyre coastal artwork submitted to illustrate book

Michael Hunt

Five different pieces of public artwork proposed for Wyre's Mythic Coastline have been lodged with the council by artist Stephen Broadbent.

Wyre Council said the work will be installed along the coast from Cleveleys gateway to the top end of Fleetwood and form part of its £1.6m Sea Change project.

Broadbent's work is aiming to illustrate a new children's book by author Hannah Megee which celebrates the history, landscape and folklore of the Cleveleys coast.

Megee is working alongside children's author Gareth Thompson on the book which will explore some of the coastline's treasures from Fleetwood Harbour and Rossall sand dunes to mythical shipwrecks.

Broadbent was the artist who designed Cleveleys 'People's Promenade'. The council said the five conceptual names for the artwork are:

  • Sea Swallow Beacon
  • Fylde Coast Memorial
  • Golden Shell
  • Princess Mary Driftwood
  • Whirlpool Listening Shell

Depending on budget, the council said up to 12 pieces will eventually make up the trail and link to the book.

If plans are given the go-ahead, the trail will start with a beacon at the top of Victoria Road West. The council said two sea swallows from the story itself are symbolic of the town's "protectors" and a 3D map of both actual and mythical elements is being incorporated.

Golden Shell with blow holeThe council added that a golden shell within view of the promenade cafe is proposed for the end of the new stone groyne at Cleveleys. A tidal "blow hole", spurting water for a short period each day before being completely submerged, is a feature of this particular work.

A memorial listing ships lost along the Fylde Coast, their date and the nature of the shipwreck is planned, while an installation designed as a play area is proposed for Rossall sand dunes titled 'Princess Mary Driftwood'.

This will involve a six metre curve of steel including a passage from the book and three large glacial boulders and an ogre's paddles carved in timber.

The final piece needing planning permission, dubbed the Whirlpool Listening Shell, includes a steel dish with text from the book, small bronze sea creatures and shells inserted to form a spiral.

Broadbent said: "I'm delighted with how the project has developed; the coastline has inspired a great story, wonderful illustrations and now a series of dramatic artworks for the coastline which I hope visitors will enjoy.

"I hope that the sea swallows will be seen as the symbolic guardians of the town, directing people to the promenade and marking the start point of the Mythic Coastline.

"It's going to be so wonderful seeing this locally inspired storybook and the artwork trail encouraging people to walk and cycle the coastline."

Cllr Barry Birch, cabinet member with responsibility for the Sea Change programme, added: "We will have to wait a little longer to see what the planning committee makes of them, but if permission is granted we can look forward to a very unique coastline."

The book, which is provisionally titled Between the Moon and the Earth, is planned to be published at the beginning of July.

Your Comments

Like the sound of this

By Jessica

In the current climate, are we convinced that large pieces of metal/other materials that may be expensive and difficult to maintain (if they do get maintained) is adding to the beauty and enjoyment of our coastline. Is this not rather passe? Once you’ve seen it, then what?

By artofcommonsense

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