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Irwell Sculpture Trail no. 3 – Peel Park

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Hidden : 4/22/2008
1 out of 5
2 out of 5

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Geocache Description:

The cache is situated within Peel Park, in sight of the sculptures ‘Monument of the Third Millenium’ and ‘Fabric of Nature’

The Irwell Valley Sculpture Trail
The Irwell Sculpture Trail was developed along a 30-mile route through the Irwell Valley formerly known as the Irwell Valley Way. Following the River from its source on the South Pennine Moors to where it becomes the Manchester Ship Canal at Salford Quays, the first sculpture was installed in 1987. Thanks to an Arts Lottery award in 1996, the project grew, and 30 sculptures were eventually installed along the route. Unfortunately, some of these have been destroyed by vandals: one, notably, even before its official opening. This series of caches has been based on the remaining sculptures, and has been numbered following the Irwell upstream from Salford Quays.

The Sculptures – A) The Fabric of Nature
Site: Peel Park, Salford
Sculptor: Julia Hilton
Installed: 17 June 2000
Material: Cast brick; stainless steel, brass; earth and turf
Size: 28mhigh x 32m wide

Description: Earthwork in the shape of a bud and leaf unfurling up into a double spiral mound, leading to a curved seating area A series of leaf Images and inscription etched in stainless steel are set into the brick floor, to the front of a brick seat Inscription etched on stainless steel panels inset into brick floor:

We are but whirlpools in a river of ever-flowing water
We are not stuff that abides but patterns that perpetuate themselves

In the mid-1990s Salford city Council began to take action to restore its inner-city parks, which had suffered from decades of under funding and neglect. A major plan to redesign and improve Peel Park was developed by the council and the university of Salford Public sculpture was recognised as part of these improvements. As a partner in the Irwell Sculpture trail, Salford commissioned two sculptures for the park Julia Hilton was appointed to a residency in 1997 with the aim of collaborating on the design of the park. Out of discussions with the landscape architect she developed the idea of an earthwork sculpture that would provide seating, a play area and more colour to an area of the park - it included disused tennis courts - that had become an eyesore. The construction of the work proceeded ahead of the larger redesign of the park. Hilton's sculpture drew its inspiration from the patterns of nature, the park's flowerbeds and the nearby river, and, less obviously, Salford's buildings. She wrote that ‘from above the earthwork image is like a piece of Victorian textile design although the initial inspiration for the image came from detailing on the former education building on Chapel Street which was then adapted and refined to allow it to work on the site. The central seating area contained a series of stainless steel panels etched with Images of the leaves of trees growing in the park.

B) Monument to the Third Millennium
Site: Peel Park, Salford
Sculptor: Adrian Moakes
Installed: 17 June 2000
Material: Galvanized and painted mild steel
Size: Inner cone 5m high x diameter 1.9m

Description: Steel sculpture representing a swirling shoal of fish swimming upwards through a vortex of water. The outer, spiralling latticework of 'water' appears to move as one walks around the sculpture. Following a national competition, Adrian Moakes was selected to provide a sculpture in Peel Park. He worked on his ideas with students from the University of Salford during a three-month residency in 1997. The final work was influenced by its proximity to the River Irwell which in this part of Salford was prone to flooding. It had once been rich in wildlife, but industrial pollution had killed off the fish. The idea of the sculpture depicting a swirling shoal of fish swimming up through a vortex of water was to celebrate the river's recent regeneration, including the reappearance of fish and wildlife. It symbolized 'a positive attitude to environmental regeneration in the new century '. A circular seating area was incorporated in the base, from which the public could view the park.

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Haqre envyvatf gb gur yrsg bs n orag fgehg.

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)



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