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Future Landscape

 

To all enthusiasts of Govan’s Graving Docks,

 

Join me as I make a pitch for a possible future!

 

Drawing on a year of dock-specific and riverine fieldwork, archival research and consultation, I will be pitching an image of a possible landscape future at Govan’s Graving Docks from 5pm on Wed 17th Sept.

The pitch will take the form of a guided walk where landscape cues will introduce the key inspirations of the future vision, including the deep morphological history of the site and the Clyde estuary, and their recent natural history. QR codes revealed on the walk will allow you to view visualisations of this possible future on your mobile device, and a design booklet will also be available to view.

This event presents an important opportunity to voice and discuss aspirations for this significant landscape, to contribute to understandings of its value, and to critique a possible vision. Participation is key in this period of landscape uncertainty, so it would be great to see you there.

If you are keen to join, then please register by emailing r.olden.1@research.gla.ac.uk. We will meet at 5pm at the end of Clydebrae Street where it meets Stag street to run through a Health and Safety briefing before setting off, so please arrive in good time. Sensible shoes to be worn! And if you know of any other enthusiasts who might be interested then please do let me know.

Home-made hybrid canoe/rowing boat. Ideal for travelling the diverse water worlds of the River Clyde. From source to sea… well almost.

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Home-made hybrid canoe/rowing boat. Ideal for travelling the diverse water worlds of the River Clyde. From source to sea… well almost.

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Thank you to the volunteers at the Galgael for foraging for materials on the docks, and then helping to build and weave this green vessel. This is modelled on the traditional circular fishing vessel known as a coracle. These are typically made of willow and they say there as many coracle types as there are rivers, each adapted in its own way to suit the watercourse and the local materials available. This one had its own special flotation aid to deal with the brusque tidal current of the River Clyde. Another distinctive feature is the circular weave which can speak about the docks in different ways. Perhaps we can think of it as a big nest, or maybe a green island, or maybe a vessel to carry seed down the river… In any case, casting it off will honour the attachment to this place which has only been strengthened in the making. Special thanks to Maggie-Anne, Tam McGarvey and Jock Gordon at the Galgael.

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An invitation to mark a sad occasion in the life of Govan’s Graving Docks…

On Monday the 24th of March, the Coach House Trust are moving in to the docks to clear away the pioneering ecology that has found its home here. This clearance marks the first stage of the site’s regeneration – a project led by the developer and landowner New City Vision who plan to make a high-end housing and commercial complex of this site. The dock’s Green Mantle has become host to a fascinating array of birds, invertebrate and mammals, and has also served as a place of solace and inspiration to many people.

On the eve of this clearance, a small lit vessel made of the site’s biomass will be released into the river and carried out to sea by the receding tide. This event has been made possible by the knowledge and skills contributed very kindly by the GalGael.

This will be a sad occasion, but I hope it will provide an opportunity to honour this landscape which has become important to so many. We will be gathering on Clydebrae Street next to the garage at 3pm on Sunday 30th March, before walking to the launching point together. Please do arrive at this time so there is opportunity to hear the health and safety briefing. RSVP on r.olden.1@research.gla.ac.uk  

Casting Out

Come and see the postcard cart stationed outside Govan Undergound, 5th-8th Dec, and decide which of the many images of Govan’s Graving Docks you would like to take home with you in postcard form! If you have any stories or ideas relating to the past, present and possible future of Govan’s Graving Docks, then do please come along for postcards and conversation. See the time table below…

Postcard Cart Timetable

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Gleanings from the plant hunt have been put to good use. With little time to spare before site clearance, an inventory was collated for selected areas of the docks, and as many plants as was physically possible (on a bike and trailer) were uprooted (sometimes highly adventurously) from the crevices of the docks ruins – walls, hydraulic shafts, cobbled surfaces and altar steps – and moved out to a new site in Govan. The stop over station for this peripatetic bio community was the Birch grove in Elderpark, but a more permanent and less exposed home was found on grounds by the Preshal Trust, which the public can access any time to take a look (8 Aboukir Street, Govan, G51 4QX). Situated next to the Trusts’ smoking shelter, it now watched over by a community who much appreciate the brightening of their grounds. That said, even this site is to be developed before too long, so the plants have been transferred into tyres and will continue this wandering existence until who knows when… Perhaps it is quite interesting in fact to avoid naturalising them into a new home, in attempt to attain some of the meaning of these plants that they acquired from the communities they were found within, and the kinds of materials they were growing on. So now there are four dockland communities, representing the urban ecologies from Highland Lane, The Pump House, Dock 1 and the facility’s Hydraulic shafts. These plants are all relatively abstractly presented within titled tyres and surrounded by aggregate from their immediate context. A Dockland Bio Flotilla…

1_Urban Ecology

0_Pioneers on the Cobbles

2_Scoping

3_Digging for a Tap Root

0_Pots on the Lane

0_Salvages

0_Leaving the Docks

0_Crossing

0_Past the Shopping Centre

0_Passing the Shipyards

0_Keep

0_Evening Light

0_The Birch Grove

Mooring Post

Highland Lane

Pump House

Dock 1

Hydraulic Shafts

Staked orchids

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Smoking Shelter

https://vimeo.com/79685781