Fustian Knife sculpture

Fustian knife

Knife being installed - Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Work has already begun on laying the foundations for the sculpture in St George’s Square, Hebden Bridge.

The one-tonne sculpture of a “fustian knife”, will also serve as a giant sundial gnomon (shadow caster) after its installation next Tuesday (June 17).

Fustian knives were used in the manufacture of corduroy, a fabric for which Hebden Bridge was known throughout the world.

This large scale replica of a Fustian knife points directly north towards Nutclough Mill, former home of Hebden Bridge Fustian Manufacturing Society Ltd, founded in 1870 - in its day, the largest worker-producer co-operative in Britain. Nearby Pecket Well mill was the last mill in Britain to manufacture corduroy fustian cloth ( 1858 – 1998 ).

The installation of the sculptural piece completes the changes to Hebden Bridge town centre which have been funded by Calderdale Council, Yorkshire Forward and the European Regional Development Fund Interreg IIIB Community Initiative.

The sculpture was developed jointly by the Traffic Review Steering Group, Council Officers and local sculptor / artist, Mike Williams. It is cast from bronze in a Sheffield foundry and stainless steel fabricated by a firm in Halifax.

Foundations for the sculpture have been laid over the past few days. It is expected that the structure will be delivered and manoeuvred into position by crane next Tuesday morning at approximately 10.00am (June 17).

The sundial sculpture will be officially unveiled on Fri 20th June, (the Summer Solstice, one day early as in a leap year) at midday.

Calderdale Council have said, "The sculpture is part of the improvement scheme for the town centre, for which Calderdale Council has already won a prestigious national award run by the British Council for Shopping Centres. Last week the scheme was announced runner up in Local Government News magazine annual public realm awards and further plaudits are forthcoming, as the scheme has made the final six in the Department for Transport’s annual Transport Awards in the urban design category Winners will be announced at a prestigious construction industry ceremony in London next month."

See previous coverage on the Hebden Bridge Web of the Fustian Knife sculpture


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