After recent news of the win of the ‘Best Arts Project’ in the prestigious National Lottery Awards, it has today (Friday, 13th October), been announced that the largest mechanical puppet ever constructed in Britain will rise again next Easter in an ultimate ‘Resurrection Tour’ and visit a number of sites around the UK including Blists Hill Victorian Town, one of the ten Ironbridge Gorge Museums in Shropshire.
The Man Engine, powered by Volvo, steamed the length of the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site last summer, unearthing a deep lode of passion and pride, inspiring awe and a cult-like following. Now, the colossal feat of engineering is set to visit Blists Hill Victorian Town, near Ironbridge on Saturday, 14th April as part of his 2018 Resurrection Tour across Cornwall, the South of Wales and England.
The Man Engine crawls at 4m high and ‘transforms’ to stand at 11.2m high, powered by Volvo’s L220 wheeled-loader. The team behind the Man Engine, Golden Tree Productions, are already creating a bespoke visual, theatrical and aural experience for the Blists Hill stop, highlighting the area’s recognition as being the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution.
Delighted to be welcoming the Man Engine at Blists Hill Victorian Town on 14th April, Phil Smith Commercial Director, Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust said; “The Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site is famed as the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, where the innovative use of raw materials, creative thinking and daring designs were brought together to start a revolution that would change the world forever. The spirit of those early industrial pioneers lives on through the Man Engine and welcoming it to Blists Hill is a fitting way to celebrate the Industrial Heritage that we share with our friends in Cornwall”.
Will Coleman, the creator of the Man Engine says, said: “Our big boy is setting off in the footsteps of the Cornish Cousin Jacks, and we’re delighted that we’re bringing him to Blists Hill Victorian Town. We have a global ambition to take the Man Engine to all the significant mining and industrial heritage sites across the world with Cornish roots, so bringing him to Blists Hill, with its major status, is an ideal stop in his UK-wide journey. We can’t wait to meet all the people at the Town and have the Man Engine share the stories and the significance of the area where the Darby Dynasty of iron masters transformed the iron industry and started the Industrial Revolution”.
One of the 10 Ironbridge Gorge Museums, Blists Hill is open from 10am until 4.00pm. A great value Annual Passport Ticket allowing unlimited entry into all ten Museums can be bought at the gate or online in advance saving 10%; individual entry tickets are also available at each museum. For details call 01952 433 424 or visit www.ironbridge.org.uk.