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Published 30th Apr 2012

Orme the viking

A new arrival is adding a touch of history to an important environmental project in Middlesbrough.

Orme The Viking will be formally unveiled on Monday (April 30) as the finishing touches are put to the Ormesby Beck landscaping project.

The impressive statue was designed by local schoolchildren and project workers with a nod to the area’s possible Norse roots.

The community artwork was made possible as part of the landscaping initiative undertaken by the Ormesby Beck Friendship Group with a Community Spaces grant from Groundwork UK.

That work has been carried out alongside realignment work by the Environment Agency to address flooding issues and is expected to be complete by the end of May.

Groundwork officer Judith Underwood and Berwick Hills community worker Catherine Hughes worked with staff and pupils at Berwick Hills Primary School to design the statue, along with his outfit and weapons, and the dragon seating in the beck area.

The youngsters’ involvement even included a trip to the blacksmiths to see the statue being forged.

Landscape architect and Groundwork project co-ordinator Liz Allen identified the name Ormesby as being of Viking origin, with Orme meaning serpent or dragon.

In addition to Monday’s unveiling, a celebration event is planned for Wednesday, August 1 in the new events area near Copgrove Close and Bradhope Road. The free event will run from 10am to 2pm and all are welcome to find out more about this exciting project.

Ormesby Beck Friendship Group Chairman Councillor Barry Coppinger said: “The landscaping and realignment works have made a real difference, enhancing the Beck as a valuable community asset.

“Orme the Viking is a great addition to the project, and I am sure he will become a popular local landmark.”

Find out more

To find out more about Ormesby Beck Friendship Group, contact Cllr Coppinger on 01642 823635, vice chairman Cllr Eddie Dryden on 01642 879091, visit their ward surgery at Berwick Hills Library every Saturday between 10am and 11am.

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