A number of Lake District businesses and organisations have pledged their support in aid of the ‘Go Herdwick’ public art trail, recently launched by the Lake District Calvert Trust charity who aims to raise £1.3million through the initiative for their 40th anniversary fundraising campaign.
The Holker Group sponsored one of the 60 Herdwick Ewes, each designed and painted by a local artist and put on display in public places and outside business premises between Keswick and Windermere in the Lake District. The idea is for visitors and indeed local people to go ‘Herdy spotting’ and follow the Herdwick Trail by purchasing one of the maps available in local shops and tourist centres. The flock was ‘released’ on Good Friday, 25th March and will remain in-situ until September when they will be rounded up for a public viewing and subsequent auction in the autumn.
The installations are already causing quite a stir, with interest growing daily through photo sharing on social media, as well as regional and national press coverage. For the Holker Group, investing in the scheme offered an opportunity to not only support the wonderful work of a local charity, but also to invest in local communities. It is hoped that the scheme will help to drive tourist footfall to the county, after what has been a difficult time for many businesses and residents after last year’s devastating floods.
The Holker Group ewe named ‘Burly’ after the natural Lake District stone quarried by Holker enterprise, Burlington Slate Limited, depicts a dry stone wall as commonly found across the Lakeland fells, home to the Herdwicks. Lionel Playford, the artist who decorated the Herdwick statue thought up the idea of a ‘drystone Herdwick’ because of the natural fit between landscape and animal. Lionel commented “It was important to make the stones realistic... I built Burly from the feet up as if I was a waller”.
To take part in the Go Herdwick trail, details of where maps and memorabilia can be purchased is available at www.goherdwick.co.uk . Lastly, if you happen to spot Burly – take a selfie and share it with us on the Holker Group twitter page @Holkergroup