Abbotsbury spring sound walk


As part of the South Dorset Ridgeway Landscape Partnership, DIVAcontemporary (Bridport) are running a series of Seasonal Sound Walks on the Ridgeway, followed by an optional sound editing workshop.


On Saturday 26th April we will be leading the first of our Spring Listening Walks, starting in Abbotsbury and exploring some of the hidden treasures of the Ridgeway, including the Neolithic long barrow “The Grey Mare and her Colts” and the Bronze Age Kingston Russell stone circle.  In addition to viewing these sites, participants will be listening to and recording seasonal sounds.

This walk is 3.5 miles long.  The going is fairly easy, though muddy in places, with one climb.  We meet at The Old School House Tea Rooms, Abbotsbury at 10 a.m., start walking at 11 a.m. and aim to finish by 4 p.m. The pace is slow to allow plenty of time for listening and recording.

Contact to book your place on the walk only, or to book a place for both the walk and the workshop.

Places are limited so early booking is advisable.

The format of these weekend events is as follows.

Day 1 (Saturday) walking in the Ridgeway area with the aim of listening to the sounds of the landscape and recording those which appeal to the participant.  Participants work in pairs and are provided with professional recording equipment and are assisted on the walk by 2 sound artists.

Day 2 (Sunday) optional.  Takes place in our studio in Bridport. Participants download and listen to their sounds and choose a few favourites to edit and upload to worldwide sound map – aporee.  Selected sounds are also saved for use in an app which is being created for the Ridgeway Project.

The same walks are being repeated through the seasons in order to gather an aural picture of the changing nature of this landscape through the seasons.  So for example on our Autumn Walks we were frequently surprised by the distinctive sound of a squawking pheasant followed by the whirr of their wings as they attempted to fly away.  On the first of our Winter Walks we came across a pheasant shoot and so were able to record the sounds of the demise of some of those same pheasants.

There is currently a lot of media interest in sounds/sound recording and in particular sound walks.  “If you want to give people an acoustic epiphany … then a short journey on a sound walk is (the best) way of going about it”  says Trevor Cox in his book “Sonic Wonderland – A Scientific Odyssey of Sound”  Trevor Cox was also on Radio 4’s ‘Start the Week’ on 27th January talking about acoustic environments.  As free events these DIVAcontemporary sound walks provide an ideal introduction to this fascinating world.

If you would like more details or would like to book a place please email us.

Mandy Rathbone, Co-Director DIVAcontemporary


One comment

  1. Pingback: Abbotsbury spring sound walk and audio editing workshop |

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