Lighting the Legend 2018

The Ordsall Peacock

Lantern Parade and Fire Show

Friday 9th November 2018

This year's Lighting the Legend was inspired by the history of the Ordsall Peacock, a beautiful bronze sculpture, once lost to the community and now to be returned in 2019 to the grounds of Ordsall Hall. We couldn't think of a better theme this year than to celebrate the return of this much loved sculpture, once gracing the entrance to Ordsall High School, between 1961 and 1988. Thanks to funding support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, we are able to restore the sculpture, made by artist Gertrude Hermes and commissioned by Salford Education Board in 1961.

The lantern parade was inspired by the beautiful colours found on the birds fantastic tail. Hundreds of local people made beautiful hand-made lanterns in the shape of feathers - our visual concept was to create a huge peacock tail out of the whole parade. To head the parade we made a beautful peahen lantern sculpture, lead by Marie Cash with the help of lots of volunteers. Our friends at Walk the Plank had recently commissioned a new Peacock sculpture, so we borrowed theirs for the parade too - his tail was truly fabulous.

We paraded through the streets with many neighbours enjoying the spectacle and joining in, and we stopped off at Ordsall Hall, a special building for Ordsall where peacocks once roamed the grounds. There at the Hall, the audience were treated to a scene of community theatre; local young performers imagining how the returning Ordsall Peacock found his lost love after all these years.

Finally the parade arrived at Ordsall Park where a faithful Ordsall audience watched children from Primrose Hill primary school perform a specially choreographed peachick dance, to complete the love story.  The dance was inspired by the colour and culture of India, as it is a special national symbol there. We made neon lit costumes for the children which they loved, and they did a fabulous job. Of course, the finale wouldn't be the finale without a spectacular firework display from Walk the Plank.

Local film-makers at Zodiac Film, aka Mike and John, made another wonderful film for us too, thanks to funding from Booths Charities. And thanks to Heritage Lottery Fund,a  final film of the whole Ordsall Peacock restoration and social history project will be available at the end of 2019 once the sculpture is open again in the grounds of Ordsall Hall. So stay tuned..........