Town’s history pieced together in artwork

Svetlana Kondakova and Conor Price at the big reveal.
Svetlana Kondakova and Conor Price at the big reveal.

Artist Svetlana Kondakova says she is grateful to the 94 Souters, young and old, who helped put the finishing touches to her community artwork.

She won the commission for her masterpiece, called A Selkirk Legacy, as part of the town’s flood protection scheme community art project, and the finished artwork was unveiled on Saturday.

The common riding section of the wall.

The common riding section of the wall.

As well as celebrating the rich heritage and strong sense of community in the town through portraying locals taking part in the town’s common riding through the years, it also acts as a metaphor for the flood protection project.

In workshops held in primary schools and retirement homes, members of the public made the 94 leaping salmon that adorn the wall between the common riding section and a spectacular mosaic of scout leader Graham Coulson saving the town from a mythical kelpie, representing the might of the river itself.

Mr Coulson was voted in as the town’s hero by Souters, but there are plenty of other famous faces to catch.

Unveiling the artwork, alongside flood protection scheme project manager Conor Price, Svetlana said to the large crowd who had gathered at the site: “This has been the biggest and most important project of my life.

Casey Gillie and Svetlana Kondakova

Casey Gillie and Svetlana Kondakova

“However, to say that I did it alone would be wrong. I am very grateful and very fortunate to have had the involvement of a lot of you in the town.

“I’m really happy to finally see it all together. It is a truly amazing feeling.”