Dan­nevirke’s Vik­ing arises again

Bush Telegraph - - News - By DAVE MUR­DOCH

For 27 years traf­fic com­ing into Dan­nevirke’s High St could not miss the Vik­ing some call “Eric” on the roof out­side the Dan­nevirke In­for­ma­tion Cen­tre. Un­til three weeks ago that is — when he dis­ap­peared.

He did so be­cause he was in need of some TLC, hav­ing de­te­ri­o­rated over the years de­spite be­ing re­painted in 2007.

Now he is back, cleaned up and resur­faced by the Dan­nevirke Menz Shed and fea­tur­ing a new coat of paint ap­plied by the orig­i­nal artist and lo­cal art icon, Pat Her­bert.

Pat won a com­pe­ti­tion launched by the En­ter­prise Trust in 1991 to de­sign a Vik­ing and on May 23, 1991 he first ap­peared on the roof — built from marine ply held to­gether by 50 screws and re­in­forced by steel — cost­ing $569.10 — a lot for those times.

Pat says she gains a real sense of pride each time she passes up High St. She said cre­at­ing the icon took a com­plete con­cept, de­sign and artis­tic ef­fort.

“Af­ter all he is 4.6 me­tres tall,” she added.

She said part of the chal­lenge was to cre­ate the ex­act replica for the other side. She has ac­tu­ally painted the Vik­ing six times tak­ing into ac­count two sides.

It has taken Pat three weeks of hard work in her garage to com­plete the re­paint­ing. She was able to use her orig­i­nal plans and Moana Bev­eridge supplied her with all the paint and equip­ment to com­plete the task.

The Vik­ing this time has two new metal shields made by Me­tal­form to go with its metal sword, ob­tained by Dan­nevirke Com­mu­nity Board chair­man Ross Mac­Don­ald from the coun­cil’s sup­ply of shields which adorn the pro­tec­tive fenc­ing in High St.

The Dan­nevirke Com­mu­nity Board met the other costs of the Vik­ing’s re­fur­bish­ment.

For Pat it is a thrill to see him back in po­si­tion.

“I think he de­picts strength, ded­i­ca­tion and lead­er­ship and I am proud to have been part of his life,” she said.

Ross Mac­Don­ald (Dan­nevirke Com­mu­nity Board), Pat Her­bert (artist) and John Robert­son (Menz Shed) pose by the Vik­ing in Pat’s yard be­fore be­ing re-erected at the Dan­nevirke In­for­ma­tion Cen­tre.

The Vik­ing stands proudly once more at the Dan­nevirke Town Hall.

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