This is the first of a series of kite photography events planned as part of the Ouse Washes Landscape Partnership (OWLP). The duration is approximately 2 hours.
The workshop is limited to 10 persons and up to 5 kites will be flown if possible.
The objective is to fly kites and capture low elevation aerial photography of the St Ives Riverport and its landscape context. Participants are invited to experience kite flying with a camera and discover the landscape from a new viewpoint. Although of interest to photographers the value of the aerial viewpoint extends to those engaged in heritage recording, land use studies and beyond. The ability to capture a wider view of a significant place in our lives can play a role in enhancing the sense of place. Kite aerial photography has a rewarding surprise element in that the viewpoint is uncertain until it is revealed by capture.
All neccesary equipment will be provided. Operation of kites will be subject to direction, participants are welcome to bring a kite and a camera but you must be prepared to fly it as directed by the organiser.
Please note the following:
- The workshop MAY BE CANCELLED at short notice (up to 24 hours prior) if the weather is inappropriate for the activity, an alternate date will be offered if this is the case.
- The organiser accepts no responsibility for attendees who participate entirely at their own risk, children MUST be accompanied.
- Hemmingford Meadow is liable to flood, bring wellies if wet. The project will seek to record the flood waters if possible.
Location: The floodplain meadow is not part of any LNR, conservation area, RSPB reserve or SSSI, it is listed in the Coastal and Floodplain Grazing Marsh Priority Habitat Inventory for England Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act (2006) Section 41 habitats of principal importance. It is included in an SSSI Impact Risk Zone – to assess planning applications for likely impacts on SSSIs/SACs/SPAs & Ramsar sites (England)
The town of St Ives is considered a gateway to the wetlands of the Ouse Washes, downstream from here consent for kite flying is restricted by RSPB conservation measures. The St Ives Town Team actively support the OWLP initiative to promote the town and the KAP initiative as a means of getting new views of the town to promote it.
Recording changes in land use and landscape impacts. In bringing a variety of stakeholder in the landscape together OWLP seeks to record change in the lives and landscape of the Ouse Washes area: the re-flooding and ‘re-wilding’ of the Ouse valley floor floodplains at Earith, Holme Fen and Needingworth, the retention of high winter water levels on the Washes along with new catchment at Dry Drayton Lakes, are some of the biggest changes to the landscape since the heroic age of land drainage. Once it was the adventurers, then the navies and enginemen now it’s wildlife conservation that drives landscape change. Low level aerial photography is well suited to documenting the arrival of this change. Using a kite gets a viewpoint missed from aircraft, the cover is local and the photo-scale reflects the human aspects of landscape.
St Ives: The town of St Ives is considered a gateway to the wetlands of the Ouse Washes, downstream from here consent for group kite flying is restricted by RSPB conservation measures. The St Ives Town Team actively support OWLP to promote the town and the KAP initiative as a means of getting new views of the town to promote it.
The meadow floods frequently during the winter, with luck light on the water will produce arresting imagey but appropriate footwear for wet conditions is recommended.
From a History of the Meadow by Bridget Smith:
Once an open field. After the Enclosure Act of 1801 and the Award of 1806 allocated the land to the parish and set the rules for the management of the Meadow and the Meadow Bank, which protected the arable fields and village from flooding, passed from the Manor Court to the Vestry who were allowed to raise a rate for management, especially repairing the Meadow Bank.
The rules stated that
“it shall not be lawful…to inclose or fence out or make any Mounds, Fences, Plantations or any other alterations….which ..may…obstruct prevent, hinder, confine, lessen or impede the passage of the Waters in times of flood…”.
Grazing was allocated based on the acreage of Meadow owned; one cow or two cows under 2 years old or three weaning calves or four sheep per acre or one horse per two acres from 13 August to 13 February, announced every August and February in St Ives by the town crier. The pasture is still rented out to tenant farmers as seasonal pasture under terms dating back to the 1800s although ownership has now passed into private hands the management of the meadow remains largely unchanged.
Reservation for a place on the workshop is by email to :
Here’s hoping the light and wind are with us,