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Art trail is mane attraction in Ludlow

Ludlow | South Shropshire entertainment | Published:

Visitors are being invited to saddle up and trot around a town's art trail as a festival's first week gets under way.

From live painting to cardboard animals, Ludlow is full of art after a weekend of activity to start the town's annual two-week Fringe Festival.

The fringe has taken over as Ludlow’s main arts festival after the revived Ludlow Shakespeare and Arts Festival at Ludlow Castle was cancelled after 2014, and for the past couple of years has established itself as a stand-alone event in its own right.

It sees everything from comedy, music and theatre to pop-up art galleries at various venues around the town – and the streets themselves are also filled with performances and, of course, works of art.

This weekend paint, spray cans and boards daubed with a vibrant array of colours took centre stage as Castle Square hosted a live 'paint jam' for the fourth year running as artists set to work in front of passing crowds.

Organised by the Ludlow Arts Society as an opening event for the Ludlow Fringe Festival, it coincided with the setting up an art trail around the town, complete with a detailed, life-sized horse that was delivered to its place on Corve Street by horse box – a practical solution to transporting the fragile artwork, but also adding a touch of the surreal to proceedings.

John Jarvis, chairman of Ludlow Arts Society, said: "The Ludlow Fringe Festival got underway on Saturday with a host of free public events taking place on Castle Square.

"Ludlow Art Society's now familiar paint jam brought artists from as far afield as Chester to paint large paintings on boards throughout the day, while children were encouraged to do pavement paintings on the flagstones and graffiti art on a board provided. The brilliant sunshine made the whole thing a wonderful spectacle for visitors and shoppers alike.

"While this was going on, last minute preparations were being made for the Ludlow Fringe Art Trail, now in its fifth year.

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"This shows off the work of dozens of artists from around the region – painters, sculptors, potters, printers, photographers, jewellers and other craftspeople.

"Their exhibits are spread across twenty-three different locations across the town centre and a free map and guide is widely available around town including the fringe information kiosk on Castle Square.

"One art trail exhibit took some very special handling. Warrior the War Horse arrived by horsebox at Myriad Organics, venue 22. Created by artist Ann Wallace, he represents the famous World War 1 war horse who survived the battles at the Somme and Ypres and was awarded the PDSA Dickin Medal.

"The Art Trail really does have something for everyone. As well as looking out for Warrior, watch out for the aeroplane crash-landing in St Laurence's churchyard, a community piece which forms this year's Fifth Plinth sculptural installation," he said.

Full details of what is on the trail can also be found at the website www.ludlowfringe.co.uk. Most of the artwork is for sale and the trail runs until July 2, he said.

Thomas Morton

By Thomas Morton
@tmorton_star

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star

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