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Ribble Valley’s ‘Little Gem’ Sculpture Trail Features in New Film

Two heads in a tree
CARVING A REPUTATION – The Ribble Valley Sculpture Trail features 22 unique carvings, among them Two Heads in a Tree, Otter, Fir Cone and Sika Deer.
Published Thursday, 27 May 2021

One of Ribble Valley’s most successful cultural projects described as a ‘little gem’ by an international travel website is the subject of a new short film.

The Ribble Valley Sculpture Trail, situated along 1.5 miles of woodland and flower-rich grassland between Brungerley Park and Cross Hill Quarry in Clitheroe, was started in 1993, with the wood carving, Two Heads in a Tree, by Thompson Dagnall.

It now features 22 unique artworks reflecting the borough’s environment and heritage from some of the best artists in the UK, including the famous Sika Deer crafted in stainless steel by Clitheroe sculptor Clare Bigger and six ceramic pieces by Halima Cassell, whose distinctive geometrically-patterned work enjoys an international reputation.

The trail was the first sculpture trail in Lancashire and is now one of Ribble Valley’s most popular visitor attractions.

And now it is the subject of a short film produced by Ribble Valley Borough Council and Tom Pope of Tepee Creative that is going viral on social media.

Ribble Valley Borough Council’s arts development officer, Katherine Rodgers, said: “The aim of the sculpture trail was to make art accessible and create a free cultural activity that encouraged people to enjoy Brungerley Park, explore the outdoors and keep fit, and engage with the natural beauty of the area and its wildlife.

“The trail now features the work of several artists, who have gone on to enjoy international careers and critical acclaim, and attracts visitors from far and wide.

“Now, partly due to the pandemic, people are enjoying the outdoors more than ever and we have made this film to raise awareness about this fabulous trail for residents and visitors to enjoy in a stunning riverside setting.”

The Ribble Valley Sculpture Trail skirts the River Ribble and, as well as dramatic views of the Forest of Bowland, you can routinely spot kingfishers, herons, salmon, sandpipers, otters and bats.

It has many enthusiastic followers and is described on travel website TripAdvisor as a ‘little gem’.

Studies show that 57 per cent of people now go on more walks or walk for longer than they did before the pandemic.

A walk can improve your mood, is good for your physical health and you can discover something new on your doorstep that you wouldn't have previously found.

And with continuing uncertainty around international travel, Ribble Valley has found itself at the centre of a staycation boom, with much of the borough’s accommodation already booked for the summer.

Staycations offer a safe and secure holiday, and the opportunity to explore attractions, such as the Ribble Valley Sculpture Trail, closer to home.

The Ribble Valley Sculpture Trail film can be viewed at ribblevalley.gov.uk and Ribble Valley Borough Council’s YouTube channel.

A trail leaflet is available from the Platform Gallery and Visitor Information Centre on 01200 425566 or platform.gallery@ribblevalley.gov.uk.

 

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