North East Connected

Blyth Beach Huts get a brand-new look for 12 hours only

Blyth Beach Huts get a brand-new look for 12 hours only

600 handmade sailcloth flags created by local people, will be installed around Blyth’s iconic beach huts for one day only

Blue Flag, an installation of 600 handmade sailcloth flags created by local people, artists and schoolchildren will be installed Blyth Beach in front of the iconic beach huts this Saturday.

The installation by Great Northumberland, is part of Headway Arts’ arts partnership with The Blyth Tall Ship, entitled Inspiration Exploration. Blyth Tall Ship aim to sail to Antarctica to recreate Smiths voyage.

Volunteers and organisers from Headway Arts will install the 600 blue flags from 10:07am (after high-tide) and they will be in situ throughout the day, weather and tide allowing.

Each flag has been created using cyanotype photoreactive techniques, which means the flag ‘develops’ into a bold Prussian blue colour when exposed to sunlight, and there’s been plenty of that over the past few weeks as hundreds of local people have attended workshops at Headway Arts to design and create their own flags to be part of the art piece.

The installation is celebrating the voyage of Captain William Smith, who was the first captain to discover Antarctica, and the flag-makers have been asked to take inspiration from Captain Smith’s journey to Earth’s Southernmost continent.

Allie Walton-Robson, Creative Director, Headway Arts, says: “The complete artwork contains 600 beautiful handmade Blue Flags, each as completely unique as the local people who made them. We have used Solography to create blueprints on the flags, which basically uses sun and shadow to make the images, encouraging people of all ages to experiment. Some even used found objects and driftwood from the beach or made their own stencils to create shadows, which become the pattern once developed in the sun. We couldn’t have had a better summer for it! We are thrilled to be flying the flag for our County and Headway Arts look to forward welcoming everyone to this free event celebrating the creativity and ingenuity of Northumbrians.”

Part of the Great Exhibition of the North ‘Inspired By’ programme and designed specifically to get visitors to the region to explore the country’s most northerly county, Great Northumberland offers a range of unique, family-friendly, events, activities and adventures many of which are free of charge. Sign up for the newsletter on the website to find out about all Great Northumberland events across the Summer. Find out more at

Blue Flag is at Blyth beach from c.10:00am and uninstalled from 6:30pm on Sunday 19th August.


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