Posts Tagged ‘rural society’

Make a wish, have a dream…

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Have you ever blown out birthday cake candles, or tossed a coin into a pool of water, and made a wish?! Even just a little wish? Well, here’s your chance to revisit your wish-making urge and do just that. I’ve created an online portal, a ‘wish-making website‘, that enables you to make a wish!

The site was set up in order to create a ‘wishing woodland’ art installation – consisting of wishes contributed by anybody (that’s you) tied to trees in a growing woodland. (Set up with database expertise provided by Chris Mewton at PC In Our Time.) The only cost to making a wish is the thought and time involved.

The installation, which goes live next spring, will be part of a rural sculpture trail in the village of Bergh Apton, Norfolk: the village’s fifth, with previous ones having taken place in 2005, 2002, 1999 and 1997. The last trail in 2005 attracted over 10,000 people over six days (three weekends), and raised over £50,000 (c.$100,000 at today’s exchange rate) for charity; here are some pics –


You can see more photos by some of the previous trail’s visitors here, uploaded to flickr.

The sculpture trail has been one of many initiatives in the village. Despite being a post-agricultural rural community – and being a small village of 400 inhabitants, separated and spread out by over twenty miles of road – something ensures its people come together and do lots of stuff. Alongside their Arts Committee, they have a conservation and wildlife trust; amateur dramatics and visiting professional performers; a rolling programme of creative workshops; regular yoga clases; a history society; a committed church congregation; concerts; quiz and chips evenings – you name it and they will almost have it! The village’s sense of community is tangible and so I wasn’t surprised to encounter this photo on flickr –

There’s lots going on in Bergh Apton‘, originally uploaded by Pigsaw – whoever ‘Pigsaw’ (great name) is.

The theme of the 2008 sculpture trail is Balance. Here’s the village’s website blurb –

The theme of Bergh Apton’s next Sculpture Trail is the concern, all over the world, that man’s hand is behind the changing climate of our mother Earth. What mankind thinks he wants, rather than what he needs, is bringing us perilously close to what environmentalists call ‘the tipping point’ – think of a pair of scales or a seesaw – even the smallest extra weight will cause it to tip.

In twelve garden locations in the village, we shall encourage sculptors to show works that ask how we balance the needs of mankind against those of the other species with which we share this Earth, and the needs of the planet itself.

This small country community and its sculptor friends do not have solutions to the problem. But, together, we and visitors to the Sculpture Trail have voices that may be heard by those who do!

Nice, eh?! My woodland installation idea plays on the ‘suspicion’ that there could exist a reciprocal connection between our deepest yearnings, desires and wishes and the wider (what some call the ‘more-than-human’) world. Is there something you most desire? If so, take a short ‘click trip‘. And if you’re wanting a really worthwhile day out or weekend away (my experience has been that there’s something a bit Field of Dreams about the trails), Balance is being held on

  • Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th May
  • Saturday 31st May and Sunday 1st June
  • Saturday 7th & Sunday 8th June

in 2008, and is open 10.30am to 6.00pm each day.