Scores of Meremaids and Meremen will be bobbing up all over the town this summer in a nine-week community arts project led by Sally Poynton, an assistant at the town’s library.
Local businesses, schoolchildren, individuals and community groups are being encouraged to design and decorate their own aquatic figures, using a cut-out template supplied by the library.
The idea is to create a colourful Meremaid and Meremen trail for locals and visitors to follow around the town centre during July, August and early September.
Sally said: “Other communities including Overton and St Martins have held scarecrow festivals in the past year, but we wanted to do something different in Ellesmere, inspired by the glacial waters of the mere.
“We’re thrilled that so many people have responded positively and want to be involved. We already have dozens of these mysterious and beguiling creatures in preparation, and from July 3 they’ll be ready to make their debut in local shops and other venues, including the library at Our Space, the town and market hall, the medical practice and Methodist church. They’ll all be individually designed and decorated to represent various aspects of the town’s life.”
The Community Hospital League of Friends and Friends of Ellesmere Library have sponsored the project and many traders have promised to support the project.
“We’ve had enthusiastic support from all the Guides, Brownies and Scout groups in the town, Lakelands Academy, the Craft and Chat group, Swanmere Day Centre, Comrades’ Club and numerous traders,” said Sally.
“Some shopkeepers are doing their own designs, while others will be ‘hosting’ figures created by other people.
“After such a sad and difficult year with the Covid 19 pandemic, we hope that residents and visitors alike will find this an uplifting and enjoyable experience – a bit of fun that will brighten up our lovely town throughout the summer and raise a smile.
“We’ll be encouraging everyone to follow the figure-of eight Merefolk trail along the main streets of the town and see how many figures they can spot..
“It’s a free, safe event that will run until September 3. and hopefully it will be something for visitors to Ellesmere to go home and tell their friends about.”