Friday, June 03, 2011

Giant Tay Whale!

... for Dundee WestFest.

At lunchtime today, I attended the photo event flyover for WestFest's Giant Tay Whale (see news release from West Fest below) - although the flight was a bit late so, having another commitment, I missed the actual flyover itself!    But many thanks to WestFest for the photo sent tonight!

Dundee WestFest has created at rival to the The Uffington white horse and the Cerne Abbas giant. A huge drawing of the Tay Whale covering the size of 3 football pitches has been marked out on the Riverside pitches next to the Tay and Dundee airport.
 The giant whale will only be on display for the next three weeks after which the grass will be cut and football pitches marked out.

Paola McClure chair of WestFest said. “When we noticed the pitches being re-seeded last year we contacted Dundee City Council to find out if we could use the expanse of unmarked grass. Once we had explained the idea to them their staff have been exceptionally helpful in making this happen. We have also had the help of access students from Dundee College working with their surveying lecturers pegging out the drawing, which was then marked on to the grass using the white line marker they use for the pitches.”

It is hoped the giant whale will be a real welcome to Dundee for all the passengers arriving at the airport as it’s right on the approach to the runway of the airport.

 The Tay Whale, a humpback whale hunted and killed in 1883 in the River Tay, Dundee then the UK's main whaling port. The Tay whale came to public prominence when it was subject to a public dissection by Sir John Struthers and taken on a tour of the UK. The skeleton is now in The McManus Galleries in Dundee. It was also the subject of a poem by William Topaz McGonagall called "The Famous Tay Whale"

Dundee WestFest is a community festival running from the 13 to 19 June and has something for everyone from history talks, art exhibitions, and all sorts of music, ending with Big Sunday a gala day on Magdalen Green during which an attempt will be made on the world record for the largest piggyback race.