Waalk this way: Amble’s new sculpture trail is poised for lift-off

Posted on 19th May 2022 | in Community

Walkers around Amble will soon begin to see the construction of the long awaited sculpture trail which hopes to inspire walkers, artists and nature lovers to visit the Friendliest Port.

Above l-r: Artist Celia Smith’s work will be at the entrance to Hauxley Nature Reserve; Amble artist Frances Anderson’s piece, Murmuration

Known as The Bord Waalk (‘Bird Walk’, in our local accent), the project is a new walking trail of public sculptures inspired by the bird-life found around the Amble coast.

The artworks are being created by nationally and internationally renowned artists, bringing something unique and very special to the area. The Bord Waalk will be enjoyed by residents and attract visitors to Amble from across the country.

The Bord Waalk was devised by Amble Development Trust, and is funded by the Coastal Communities Fund, Arts Council England and Northumberland County Council.

Tern Wings: Jon Voss

“The aim is to attract new visitors to the area, and to create commercial skills and opportunities for artists, engaging local communities with creativity, and encouraging a closer connection between art lovers, outdoor enthusiasts and bird watchers, “ said Amble Development Trust’s director Julia Aston.

“We very much want this to be a ‘must see’ experience for visitors. We hope it brings a heightened awareness to audiences of the relationship between the landscape and the world of ornithology.”

Part of the trail includes an augmented reality app to enable people to access poetry, soundscapes, music, and information about the trail and the artworks themselves, as well as the birds and the ecology that has inspired the works.

The route for the ‘waalk’ includes a varied range of backdrops and habitats. The trail will align with the already established England coastal path, and is accessible at locations between Hauxley Nature Reserve, following the coastline to Amble, through the town and along the river Coquet.

“Now at long last we have all planning conditions discharged for the trail,” said Julia, although licences are still required from NCC for sculptures on their land. “So now we are able to share locations and details of each sculpture that will be erected through the trust’s Bord Waalk project.”

In addition to the physical sculptures by artists, funding through the Arts Council has allowed workshops to take place in local schools. This work will be showcased at the upcoming Puffin Festival.


Bord Waalk map guide

There is no definitive start or finish to the trail, but this guide begins at Hauxley Nature Reserve and travels along the coast through Amble heading towards Warkworth. See map above.

Sculpture number 1 is by Celia Smith located at the entrance to Hauxley Nature Reserve
Sculpture number 2 is ‘Brick Tree’ by Rodney Harris which incorporates nesting spaces for birds will be located on the beach road at Hauxley
Sculpture number 3 is ‘Murmuration’ by local artist Frances Anderson, will be located next to the East Cemetery
Sculpture number 4 is ‘Big Puffin’ by Ben Greenwell will be in Paddlers Park
Sculpture number 5 is ‘Eggs’ by Stuart Langley sitting at the top of Horseshoe Hill
Sculpture number 6 is ‘Roseate Tern’ by Jonny Michie will be next to the entrance at Spurreli
Sculpture number 7 is ‘Bird Heads’ by Andrew Burton will be in the Town Square
Sculpture number 8 is by Diane Watson and will be incorporated into the new car park structure
Sculpture number 9 is ‘Dokies Egg’ by Alec Finlay on the Braid triangle
Sculpture number 10 is ‘Sphere’ by Rob Mulholland next to the Coquet Shorebase
Sculpture number 11 is ‘Tern Wings’ by Jon Voss which will be close to the Braid entrance onto the river path towards Warkworth
Sculpture number 12 is ‘Bird Song’ by Aether and Hemera
To supplement the physical sculptures we have poetry by Katrina Porteous, ‘The Bird Roads’ bird song recorded along the walk by Geoff Sample and Music by John Kefala-Kerr which can be accessed soon on an app: ‘Amble Bord Waalk Trail’ created by Animmersion. This also has an interactive bird offering information on the artists and their creative processes.

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