The Wharfe in spate at The Strid
It is approximately 140 miles from the confluence of Oughtershaw Beck and Green Field Beck (to form the River Wharfe) – to Spurn Point, where the Humber flows into the sea. Within that distance we can see the results of glaciation, heather moorland, monastic communities, villages and towns that have born witness to near-revolution by mill workers, Viking settlements, tourist ‘honey-pots’, vast plains of arable crops, red-brick villages and towns, magnificent churches and abbey’s, massive power stations, a record-breaking bridge, ports that handle global trade, proud former fishing communities, an amazing city reinvented – and ultimately a National Nature Reserve and strip of land that looks both outward, towards Europe – and back, in the direction of three of Yorkshire’s rivers.
This project is looking at the people who know these rivers best. The communities who live alongside these – sometimes benign – sometimes ferocious river systems. The people who work on and with these rivers. The lives that are inexplicably inter-twined with these ribbons that lay across our land.
The aim of this project is not to comment on societal change, but to faithfully document elements of the lives of the subjects – as they see it, in the second decade of the 21st century.
Hull: City of Culture 2017