From now till September, The Stove will be inviting people to contribute to an event that celebrates the River Nith’s importance – both historically and today. From its role as a trade route delivering economic lifeblood to Dumfries, to its significance as a conservation area, and to individuals and groups who find peace, tranquility and joy from its banks and passing moments.
Forming part of the Environmental Arts Festival Scotland, The Nithraid will culminate in a daring dinghy race from Carsethorn to the very centre of Dumfries on Saturday 21st September. As the equinox pushes the tide to its annual peak, intrepid sailors will tackle the river head-on, surfing (maybe literally) the incoming tide to reach the finishing line at the Caul in Dumfries, where the salt water and fresh water meet.
When the boats arrive in the town, they will be greeted by a sculptured cow cast in salt and The Stove’s huge fabric banners floating downstream from the Old Bridge, welcoming them to Dumfries with messages from the townspeople. We would like your help writing those messages.
We’ll be decorating banners at community events in August and September and will turn to our social media channels for inspiration too. As we gather words and phrases, we’ll start to build a wall of words. Then our bicycle-powered poetry machine will mix them up and stick them together to form messages for our banners.
The Stove’s community fun day takes place in Lochside on Sunday 18th August and we hope to do a similar event in Dumfries town centre on Tuesday 10th September. The social media initiative will kick off in August. Keep your eyes peeled for #NithRaid on Twitter and Facebook.
Our River Nith; the passenger, the deliverer and the exporter. With untold tales from its length and breadth, and its historical depths. From its rise in the East Ayrshire hills to Ards point, 15 miles south of Dumfries, where it meets the Solway Firth and greets the wider world – connecting the town locally, nationally and globally.