Next month (September) sees the mine at Boulby celebrate fifty years of operation. By way of marking the occasion we have commissioned local artist/blacksmith Katie Ventress to create a lasting sculpture that will sit alongside the Cleveland Way near the Boulby site.
Made out of galvanised steel It takes the form of a miner carrying the type of equipment which would have been in used in the early days. He will be sat at a replica ‘bait table’ made of laser-cut stainless steel.
The top of the table will be in the form of a map of the mine to help people sitting there visualise the site. The head of the bench has been forged to feature communication equipment in use at the time. Alongside the statue will be seats where miners past, present and future, as well as members of the public, can take their families for a stroll and a picnic and maybe a ‘selfie’ with the figure.
The restrictions being enforced at present has caused one or two unusual difficulties for the artist, as Katie, whose studio is at Hinderwell near Whitby, explains: “Ideally I would have liked to have used a miner as a model for the piece but social distancing put a stop to that,” she said. “Instead I’ve had to use my partner and he’s got a bit fed up of me staring at him from time to time or asking if I can measure his nose.”