Torbay unveils pillars of the community
VISITORS to Torquay's seafront are being invited to delve into Torbay's history following the installation of new interpretation pieces on Torquay Harbour and in Princess Gardens.
Three column structures in Princess Gardens tell the stories of some well known characters including Buffalo Bill, Oscar Wilde, Rudyard Kipling and HH The Princess Louise who, in the past, have all been inspired by the beauty and views around Torbay today.
Those visiting the area will find out more about Buffalo Bill's visit to the Bay in 1904 and how he referred to it as the "Prettiest place I have ever seen in my life."
They will also discover Elizabeth Barrett-Brownings's connection to the Bay following a horse riding accident.
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Many of the stories have been taken from the Torbay Connected website at www.torbayconnected.co.uk, which allows people to access the Bay's rich
history and also add their own stories, myths and content.
The second interpretation piece is located nearer to Beacon Quay by the modern bridge and tells the story of the Barking Furnace, which was used by fisherman to treat their nets with 'bark' preservative on the harbour-side.
Executive Lead for Arts and Culture Cllr Dave Butt, said: "Both pieces of beautifully designed work reveal our rich heritage to residents and visitors and how many famous people have been inspired by our lovely Bay.
"The columns create a focal point, next to the English Riviera Wheel providing an opportunity for people to gather and talk about our fascinating history, whilst the Barking Furnace information is appropriately located nearer to the harbour celebrating the role it played in our fishing heritage."
The funding for both projects came from Torbay Council's capital fund for works to Princess Parade and Victoria Parade.
The research for the Barking Furnace piece was carried out by local artist Nell Stevens whose work also inspired the telescope located on Victoria Parade. People can find out more about her work at http://berthingtales.wordpress.com/
The columns have been designed so they can be moved around the Bay over the next year.