A stone sculpture celebrating the beauty of Scammonden Water was unveiled at the annual South Pennine Walk and Ride Festival.

The sculpture has been produced as part of the Stanza Stone project, a unique collaboration between sculptor Peter Maris, poet Simon Armitage and local young people.

Mayor of Kirklees Clr Martyn Bolt unveiled the sculpture on Saturday.

The stone is inscribed with 26 unconnected phrases describing the Pennine landscape such as ‘bless a new sky’ and ‘memories of puddles’.

Kirklees Council countryside officer Simon Pedley said: “Scammonden Water is a fantastic site to explore and this was a great way to celebrate all the work that has been done over the last couple of years.

“We are grateful to the Pennine Prospects Walk and Ride Festival for the opportunity to showcase the site as part of this festival.”

Activities on the launch day included Nordic walking, orienteering, a story trail and children’s craft activities.

A film project created by pupils from Colne Valley High School and film maker Bev Addy looking at nature at Scammonden Water was also screened.

Scammonden Stanza stone
Scammonden Stanza stone
 

Mr Maris has also designed an accompanying bench which has been cut by water-jet technology to mimic the shape of the reservoir.

In both projects he has used a mixture of local stones supplied by Marshalls plc and also called upon Hipperholme-based Scribble Stone for their technological services.

The unveiling comes after Yorkshire Water made significant investment in the access trails and car park close to the site.

The Stanza Stones project, which started at Ilkley Festival in August 2010, is focused on poems specially written by Simon stirred by his response to the Pennine Watershed and the relationship between the landscape and language of Yorkshire.

The seven stones will form a permanent moorland trail across the watershed from Ilkley to Marsden, the home town of the poet.