Shepherd turns heads at Dotterel roundabout

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13b

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13b

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MOTORISTS have had their heads turned by the installation of what is intended to be a “feel-good” sculpture on the A165 at Reighton.

The Dotterel Shepherd, as it has been named, is the creation of Bridlington-based artist Ronald Falck as a thought provoking reminder of the area’s rural heritage.

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13a

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13a

The fibre-glass sculpture stands proud on the Dotterel roundabout at the top of the new Reighton bypass and has a commanding view over miles of open countryside.

People on one of the busiest stretches of coastal road can enjoy a shepherd and his dog battling the elements as he guards his flock of five sheep and, the single lamb which he is holding protectively under his arm.

Mr Falck said: “Viewed from a distance, as an aesthetic, the Dotterel Shepherd was intended to be a powerful and a distinctive silhouette against some magnificent skies.

“He is meant to be a significant heritage sculpture for this area with a message about the dedication and caring shown by the farming community to their animals.”

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13d

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13d

His work is also intended to connect with human feelings depicting a moment in time for people to reflect upon the past and to give a “feel good factor” to spectators.

Although he would have preferred to create the work in bronze, financial constraints meant using the unconventional technique of working with liquid resin soaked fibre-glass matt material placed on wire supports. When the resin dries it looks like marble.

The pieces were then fixed to a strong welded metal armature.

Support for his project has come from Reighton and Speeton Parish Council and Scarborough Council gave him funding of £3,000 but the rest came out of his own pocket.

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13c

Round about at the Dotterel'Life Size Art Work of a Shepherd and his Sheep'PA1113-13c

The Dotterel Shepherd was erected last month by North Yorkshire County Council and the armature welding was provided by Autocool of Scarborough.

Apart from that help, Mr Falck of Landsdowne Crescent, said sponsorship had been difficult to find.

“There are people locally who offered funding for the idea initially, but withdrew when they could not display advertising on the sculpture,” he said.

Asked if he was satisfied with the work, he said: “It is what it is. I’ll just wait to see what other people think.”

Known as a landscape painter more than a sculptor, he has just completed work as artist in residence at Castle Howard for the past five years.

However he was taught at the Slade School of Fine Art by Sir Henry Moore and worked for him as an apprentice at that time on some of his works.

“I am from a rural background and connect with that way of life as opposed to the urban scene where slick images generally do not have such a depth of feeling, he said.