A new public art sculpture – celebrating Queensferry’s famous bridges – could soon have a new home overlooking the Firth of Forth.
Business group Queensferry Ambition has just gained planning consent from the City of Edinburgh Council to site “The Guardian of the Bridges” on McIver’s Brae, just off Edinburgh Road, at the eastern end of the town centre.
It is hoped work will start on site later this year.
The mosaic sculpture – in the form of a creature or dragon - was developed by artist Debbie Ryan, and is based on designs and mosaics created by local school children from both North and South Queensferry.
Debbie ran art workshops in the local community throughout the course of several months. In total over 700 people were involved in the project, from school children to library and community care groups.
“The Guardian” was originally commissioned to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Forth Road Bridge, gaining £25,000 funding from the Scottish Government-funded arts body, Creative Scotland. However, the project was delayed as Queensferry Ambition struggled to get a suitable site.
Debbie said: “The new site is a bit of a gem, allowing people to visit the sculpture and explore the beautiful views and landscape around Queensferry – on foot or by bike.”
She added: “It was great to be involved in the project. I ran workshops with local children to design and create the sculpture. The pupils created their own mosaics and also worked on panels which were incorporated into the actual sculpture. I’m hoping the project will encourage a lifelong interest in the arts for some of the children.”
David Cameron, the chairman of Queensferry Ambition, said: “It’s taken some time to get the right site. I’m pleased we can now go ahead and build a final home for the sculpture on McIver’s Brae. It will add to the attractions in the town and give people another reason to visit Queensferry.
“I’d like to thank Debbie and all the people who have been involved in the project.”
Debbie has worked on a range of projects, including a sculpture called “Discovery” for the Oor Wullie Public Art trail in Dundee and a mosaic sculpture trail for the town of Bervie. Originally from Liverpool, Debbie has been based in Scotland for over four years. She has exhibited her work around the world and her studio is now based in Biggar, South Lanarkshire.