Fringe ben­e­fits

David Falk, Suf­folk County Coun­cil’s Green Ac­cess man­ager, looks for­ward to the Suf­folk Walk­ing Fes­ti­val Fringe, a brand new se­ries of events that get to the very heart of the coun­try­side

EADT Suffolk - - Inside -

This year’s Suf­folk Walk­ing Fes­ti­val has some ex­cit­ing sur­prises

I once read an ar­ti­cle about the ben­e­fits to chil­dren of be­ing in the coun­try­side. The start of the ar­ti­cle threw me slightly. It said walk was a four-let­ter word, a word to avoid. Never tell a child we’re go­ing for a walk. In­stead, say some­thing else. “Let’s go on a trea­sure hunt”, “Who wants to see the seals?”, “We must see the view”. It’s the same for many of us. We don’t al­ways want to go for a walk, but once in the coun­try­side we feel so much bet­ter. The lure should be some­thing spe­cial – a mur­mu­ra­tion of star­lings, pick­ing wild black­ber­ries, see­ing pur­ple heather in late sum­mer. It’s the con­nec­tion with na­ture that makes be­ing out and about so spe­cial.

And this phi­los­o­phy is at the heart of the Suf­folk Walk­ing Fes­ti­val Fringe, a se­ries of events that speak of Twi­light Sa­faris, learn­ing po­etry in a Labyrinth, and gath­er­ing a hedgerow cream tea. And there’s no men­tion of a walk!

ICONIC IM­AGES

“It was a Prak­tica. I re­mem­ber it well”. Phil Mor­ley, Suf­folk born and bred pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­pher (www.phil-mor­ley.co.uk), is telling me about his first cam­era. Phil’s lead­ing a se­ries of Fringe events ti­tled Iconic Im­ages, each one fo­cus­ing on a spe­cial lo­ca­tion.

“I re­mem­ber be­ing the one who took all the fam­ily photos on hol­i­day. I was only 13, but my love of photography grew from there. When I got that SLR cam­era it was built like a brick, not at all like to­day’s cam­eras, but I loved it.” Phil has spent a ca­reer behind the lens. Work­ing for news­pa­pers, on pri­vate com­mis­sions and teach­ing, he en­thuses about photography. His most re­cent com­mis­sion was a cook­book fea­tur­ing the county’s top chefs, ti­tled Suf­folk Feast. His work is a feast for the eyes.

“My main love is land­scapes and my favourite pho­tog­ra­pher has to be Ansel Adams.” Phil ex­plains how he too shoots on black and white, de­vel­op­ing im­ages in a dark­room at home. His three Fringe events lean heav­ily on this love of land­scapes. “With land­scapes you need to take time. You need to re­ally look at a scene, slow down and think hard about com­po­si­tion. It’s as much about what’s in the shot as what’s not.”

Phil’s pas­sion for photography ex­tends to teach­ing at West Suf­folk Col­lege and run­ning a week­end photo club at his lo­cal school, teach­ing photography to 13-year-olds. Per­haps one of them will be­come the next Ansel Adams, or even the next Phil Mor­ley?

Iconic Im­ages – South­wold Icons, at South­wold Pier, Sun­day May 13. In­dus­trial Her­itage, at Mid Suf­folk Light Rail­way, Sun­day May 20. Brecks Land­scapes, at West Stow Coun­try Park, Satur­day May 26. Tick­ets £15.

BEACH­COMB­ING FOR BE­GIN­NERS

“I got moved to the States when I was just eight. We lived in Con­necti­cut and I re­mem­ber be­ing taken to the beach every week­end. It was full of sand dunes. I just loved it.”

Kate (www.beach­bonkers.org.uk) has an en­thu­si­asm for beaches that is un­par­al­leled. She ex­udes en­ergy about the sub­ject, com­mu­ni­cat­ing with words, hands and eyes. I love talk­ing with her. “When I came to Suf­folk the first place I went was the coast. I wanted dunes again but found shin­gle. And then I found things in the shin­gle and was amazed by the trea­sures amongst all the peb­bles.” Kate was the ranger at Land­guard Point. Her home was a squat lit­tle brick cot­tage tucked into the shin­gle beach. It was a per­fect lo­ca­tion, liv­ing amongst the peb­bles and the trea­sures.

“Liv­ing and work­ing there I re­alised, that by slowing down and look­ing closely, how much there was to see. I found fos­sils, sharks’ teeth

‘I re­mem­ber be­ing the one who took all the fam­ily photos on hol­i­day. I was only 13, but my love of photography grew from there’

and bones.” We chat about the impact of the re­cent Blue Planet se­ries.

“Every­thing is con­nected,” she says. “What you throw away, so much of it ends up in the ocean. And then it gets washed up. And I find it when I beach­comb.” For Kate beach­comb­ing and beach clean­ing are syn­ony­mous. “Blue Planet has re­ally raised aware­ness, but we still need to join the dots up.”

Her favourite finds are sea sponge fos­sils. “They are ev­ery­where on shin­gle beaches and what amazes me is that they are 80 mil­lion years old. I once found a mam­moth tooth, which was very ex­cit­ing, but the sea sponges are my favourites.” Even a re­cent trip to Venice saw her seek out beaches. “I’ve beach combed all over the world. I’ll never stop look­ing.”

Beach­comb­ing for Be­gin­ners at Bawd­sey, Sun­days May 20 and June 3. Tick­ets £20, in­cludes home­made cake and free park­ing.

SUF­FOLK SKETCH­BOOK

Ca­role (www.car­ole­massey.com) has al­ways been an artist. “It was my best sub­ject at school,” she tells me. She went on to study sculp­ture, pot­tery and graphic de­sign at St Al­bans and then at Le­ices­ter School of Art. “I had great tu­tors who were well known artists and they re­ally in­spired me.” She worked in Lon­don, free­lanced, built up her own graphic de­sign busi­ness and then started teach­ing. She’s had six books pub­lished, in­clud­ing Draw­ing for the Ab­so­lute Be­gin­ner, and Draw­ing Por­traits. Her paint­ing of Sir Char­lie Bean, re­tired deputy gov­er­nor of the Bank of Eng­land, hangs in the Par­lour Room at the Bank. Ca­role came to Suf­folk 18 years ago, ini­tially to Bury St Ed­munds and now Leis­ton. “I love Suf­folk. There are lots of artists in the area and the county is very sym­pa­thetic to art. The vis­ual arts scene is re­ally strong and there is so much mu­sic and cul­ture.” She tells me how much she loves Alde­burgh and has been run­ning art cour­ses in a stu­dio there un­der the ti­tle Art in Alde­burgh.

Ca­role’s Fringe event is an art course at Snape Malt­ings for artists of all abil­i­ties. “There are five dif­fer­ent land­scapes there – the build­ings, the river, reedbeds, trees, and the sculp­tures. It’s a vis­ually stim­u­lat­ing and in­ter­est­ing area. And then there are the huge skies Suf­folk is known for and this lovely coastal light. It’s just so in­spi­ra­tional.”

Suf­folk Sketch­book, at Snape Malt­ings, Tues­day May 15. Tick­ets £35 in­clud­ing ma­te­ri­als, re­fresh­ments and lunch in the Con­cert Hall Restau­rant. All fes­ti­val tick­ets must be pre-booked. Pur­chase tick­ets and see de­tails on all walks and events at www.suf­folk­walk­ingfes­ti­val.co.uk

Above, Phil Mor­ley will be run­ning photography work­shops

Kate Os­borne loves beaches with a pas­sion

Ca­role Massey will run an art course at Snape Malt­ings

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