Homing Pigeons Celebrating 150 Years of Ashington

As the town of Ashington marks its 150th anniversary with a programme of community events, Woodhorn Museum has engaged and celebrated with more than 500 local school children. Their activities resulted in a stunning art installation which is on display at the museum throughout the summer.

The young people visited the former colliery site on the edge of Ashington, to learn about the mining community, the industry and the extraordinary effect the discovery of coal has had on the area during the last 150 years. As part of their visit they took time to work with museum education staff and artist Bethan Maddocks to create their own “homing pigeon” and leave a message. The messages tell of the things that are most special to the children and that they are proud of: their families, their homes and the things they love about Ashington. The finished artwork is a dramatic flock of birds soaring above the heads of visitors on the banner ramp in the main building at Woodhorn.

Woodhorn’s Chief Executive Rowan Brown would like the whole community to see “Homing” and to read the children’s messages.

“This is a beautiful, thoughtful piece of work and I’d encourage everyone to come along to see it. They put so much effort and thought into creating their homing pigeons and messages home that the finished work deserves to be appreciated by as many people as possible.

“The young people’s messages are really touching too: some talk about how their mothers are at the heart of their homes, some say how proud they feel about their community, others express their hopes for the future. The messages are an emotional and revealing insight into the feelings of Ashington’s young people.”

The display will be available at Woodhorn Museum until 4th September.

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