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19th May, 2022

Special sculpture to travel by boat to Droitwich Spa on Sunday to celebrate town’s unique salt heritage

A SPECIAL sculpture will travel by boat to Droitwich Spa on Sunday, May 6 to celebrate the town’s unique salt heritage.

Artist Katy Beinart will make an historic boat trip on the waterways, setting off today from Gloucester Docks, to celebrate the salt trade in Worcestershire which dates back more than 2,000 years.

Katy will travel on Scorpio, a heritage working boat, and will arrive at Vines Park at 11am on Sunday during the St Richard’s Canal Festival.

She will be carrying a sculpture based on the town’s old salt works.

The boat’s salt cargo will be unloaded and poured into the salt pavilion, along with locally produced salt, in a special ceremony at 12pm attended by the Mayor of Droitwich.

Her innovative art work, entitled Saltways, takes inspiration from Droitwich’s heyday as an international centre for salt production, when local waterways were used to export hugely valuable salt around the world.

The pavilion structure will then be filled with salt from countries around the world, including Bolivia, Turkey and South Africa, among others, as well as that produced at Churchfield Saltworks.

Katy’s salt pavilion will be on display at the Salt Museum in Droitwich until September before departing on board a canal boat as part of Salt Fest on September 8.

Katy said: “Saltways both celebrates the past and asks what the future of salt will be in Droitwich.

“The sculpture contains the past of Droitwich in its form but also the future as an important part of a network of contemporary salt manufacturers.

“In this way Saltways seeks to present a future vision of the town which inspires and ignites other forms of exchange, and value.”

The work is part of The Ring, run by the Canal and River Trust, an arts programme and cultural first for Worcestershire celebrating the region’s waterways.

The project’s executive producer Tim Eastop said: “Saltways promises to be a poignant and exciting spectacle recreating a waterway route that was travelled for thousands of years.

“The artwork will remind people that waterways are historic places that inspire creative insights about their past, as well as offering intriguing glimpses into their future as places of new culture and wellbeing.”

Katy’s work brings to life the importance of the community’s past salt stewardship and their contribution to the world.

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