Friday, October 05, 2012

Hayling Billy steam railway wall mounted automaton by Tom Bennett

The piece shown above by artist Tom Bennett was commissioned to go in The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre Havant. It is a working representation of a the Hayling Billy steam railway, which operated between Havant and the holiday location of Hayling Island on the south coast for 100 years.

From the artist's web site:

The principal aim of the piece was bring to life the history of the railway in a way that would engage the imagination, particularly the young. It was to be part of a larger project designed to explore the history of the borough by means of a timeline, videos, artifacts and other interactive activities. Operated by hand and with the sounds of the engine chuffing and whistling, the train moves from past to present in a landscape filled with local history. On its way it passes tunnels, bridges, a turning windmill ending up at the seaside with bathers jumping up and down in the sea.

You can see more photographs and read about this autamaton and many other automata on Tom Bennett's web site.

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