Acle Academy

Water, Mills and Marshes Project

Between February 2019 and March 2020, students in Year 9 were selected to take part in an exciting community engagement project, funded by the Heritage Lottery.

The Water, Mills and Marshes project was led by Glyn Brewerton, lecturer artist at NUA (Norwich University of Arts), and Natasha Howard, Education Officer from the organisation Claritie, who co-ordinated the different strands within the lottery-funded project.

The project aimed to produce a publication featuring our students' work, and exhibiting original art pieces to promote wider engagement within the Norfolk Broads. Our students learned some fascinating facts about our local landscape and were helped to respond to it during bespoke workshops that were held both at school and at NUA alongside a site visit to the broads.

On location at Polky’s Mill, Halvergate Marshes, the group spent time with an expert on each of the three areas of interest: water, mills and marshes. They worked with a representative from the Water Authority, taking turns to try out an aqua drone to measure water flow and channel shape. This was followed by a tour of Polky’s Mill, courtesy of a representative of the Windmill’s Trust, where we had the opportunity to sketch the machinery within. Students engaged in discussions about land usage over time, developed their knowledge of local flora and fauna.

The results of this project were exhibited in the NUA East Gallery during February and March, and the students were delighted to see their artwork displayed during a follow-up trip to the gallery.  They also received their own copy of the book that was published on 24th February 2020.

Our partnership with the Illustration Course at NUA is set to continue into the future with a new Art Curriculum project being designed and an exciting competition due to take part at the end of the course.

I enjoyed the project because it gave me a new perspective about Art' that Art is more than drawing. It showed me you can explore whilst being an artist, try new types of artwork, for example, abstract art. I learnt interesting facts about The Broads and the windmills and the way they turn.

- Amelia, Year 9

The project really opened my eyes and mind to nature, which has impacted how I see things at home, in school and in the environment".

- Mariette, year 9