Sandcastle trail pops up in Knowle West, Bristol

Knowle West sandcastleImage copyright Claudia Collins
Image caption The sandcastles have popped up across Knowle West in Bristol

A sandcastle trail is keeping residents of a Bristol housing estate occupied during the coronavirus lockdown.

Knowle West may be 16 miles from the nearest beach but contains many roads named after seaside towns.

Artist Claudia Collins’ project, Knowle West Beaches, features the sandcastles and hundreds of postcards.

The free postcards have been distributed to local shops so residents can send them to friends and family.

Image copyright Claudia Collins
Image copyright Claudia Collins
Image caption Many of the street names feature seaside towns

Home to some 12,000 people, Knowle West, where England rugby international Ellis Genge and musician Tricky grew up, has roads named after coastal towns including Padstow, Newquay, Minehead and Exmouth.

Miss Collins said: “After the lockdown came in I attended a virtual project night run by Knowle West Media Centre and, working with someone I spoke to, we’ve made these Knowle West beaches postcards which I’ve now put in all the local shops.

Image copyright Claudia Collins

“Local residents can collect them when they are out shopping for their essentials and use them to stay in contact with their loved ones.

“I’ve also been building sandcastles by all the seaside town street signs and written chalk messages so when children are out with their families they can ‘sandcastle’ spot.”

The postcards have been funded by Creative Civic Change, which pays for public art in 14 neighbourhoods across the UK.

“If people are unable to visit shops because they are isolating or shielding, I have offered to drop the postcards off during my daily exercise,” said Miss Collins, who is out on the estate every day with a wheelbarrow and broom making sure the sandcastles are maintained.

She says she hopes to organise a beach-themed street party when the restrictions are lifted.

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