Feb 2016




The first pieces of artwork will soon be installed near a new housing development on the outskirts of Thirsk.

Hambleton District Council has given planning approval for the first phase of the public art programme at Sowerby Gateway.

This will see the installation of several pieces of artwork, namely four carved boulder stones, a steel acorn sculpture and 14 steel way-markers posts.

The stones and acorn sculpture will be located on the junction of the B1448 road, where Topcliffe Road meets Gravel Hole Road.

The stones were designed by local people who took part in a series of stone carving workshops led by professional stone carver Michael Disley. In line with the sustainability theme of Sowerby Art, the stones represent different aspects of Sowerby and Thirsk and the surround landscape. This includes images of The Packhorse Bridge, St Oswald’s Church Stonework, Cod Beck, Trout, Lime Trees at Sowerby, Thirsk Racecourse, Oak Leaf, Acorn, Rams Head, White Horse at Kilburn, Gliding at Sutton Bank, Yorkshire Rose.

The acorn sculpture, which is 2m high, is being created by professional sculptor Hilary Cartmel, but it will incorporate artwork created by the local community.

The way-marker posts will be located in and around the Mulberry Homes Yorkshire development, ‘sign-posting’ the pedestrian routes through Sowerby. The tops of each post contain a circular bronze sculpture representing air, water, fire, earth and culture.

Lead artist Kate Maddison, from Chrysalis Arts, the organisation leading the ‘Sowerby Art’ programme, said: “Pupils from Thirsk School are working with me to make the circular patterns; they will see the process from design to bronze casting and onto the blacksmith’s forge where they will be thrilled to see their artwork fitted to seventeen handmade waymarker posts.”

Mulberry Homes Yorkshire, the developer building over 900 homes at Sowerby Gateway, received funding of £58,250 from the Arts Council and has invested a further £95,000 in the project, which has the backing of Hambleton District Council, Sowerby Parish Council and Thirsk-based Rural Arts.

David Meacham, Sales & Marketing Manager at Mulberry Homes Yorkshire, said: “We are delighted that people will soon be able to see the fantastic artwork that has been designed for the Sowerby Art programme.

“It will be totally unique and something we hope will bring a lot of pleasure for people living in our homes but also the wider community of Sowerby and Thirsk.”