Hawick Flood Protection Scheme

Project Date: 1st January, 2016 –

Since early 2016, CABN has been working closely with the Hawick Flood Protection Scheme (HFPS). This is an exciting opportunity to integrate arts into the development of the scheme from an early stage – including around community engagement, design of the scheme itself, and longer term proposals, including landscaping, signage and public artworks.

The key priority of the HFPS works is to protect the town of Hawick from the effects of a ‘1 in 75’ year flood event on the River Teviot, but the works also offer opportunities to incorporate imaginative artistic proposals, including for permanent public artworks, which can be taken forward into the second phase of the HFPS.

A workshop in February 2016 brought together artists and scheme Engineer Shirley Mushet, to develop a range of ideas and proposals which led to commissioning a project artist to work with the community of Hawick from May-October 2016.

Adding value to the process of community engagement around the scheme has been the involvement of the Centre for Environmental Change and Human Resilience, University of Dundee. With funding from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation they have delivered several events as part of a Scottish Borders Climate Resilient Communities Project.

Photographs and details of some of these events, along with information on the HFPS can be viewed on the project Facebook page.

Project Artist

This was a unique opportunity for a Project Artist to work closely with the engineering and project team around the Hawick Flood Protection Scheme (HFPS) and engage communities in the development and design of proposals which can be taken forward within the scheme.

The aim of the commission was to enable the Project Artist to draw on work to date including the outcomes of artists’ workshops engaging with the scheme, and a series of public meetings and presentations. The Project Artist will be able to consider some of these ideas in more detail while drawing on their own experience and expertise to formulate some tangible proposals to feed into the design of the scheme, which were presented at a public exhibition in Hawick on 22nd and 23rd August 2016.

Stow based artist, Andrew Mackenzie, was appointed as Project Artist in June 2016 and engaged with many local groups, schools and organisations. Andrew’s time as Project Artist culminated in a Public Exhibition on 23rd and 24th August 2016 in Hawick Town Hall and a celebration of the river in story, song and verse on 23rd August with “Where Teviot Rins”. View Poster (opens in new tab/window).

Over 100 people attended “Where Teviot Rins” and were treated to performances from Ian Landles, Scocha, Gordon Macdonald, French Wight, Drew Dickson, Michael Aitken, Alan and Katie Brydon and Debbie Lyons and Dave Finnie with Act One. The event was filmed by Dawn Berry and can be viewed on Vimeo – ‘Where Teviot Rins’ on Vimeo.

This opportunity was enabled through a partnership between Scottish Borders Council, CH2M (scheme engineers) and the Creative Arts Business Network (CABN). Working with the HFPS is a major ‘Place Making’ initiative, and was enabled by CABN Advocate for Place Making & Collaborations – Claire Pençak.