Icy installations created by Durham school children to feature in ice sculpture trail at Fire&Ice InDurham this weekend

It’s here, it’s here! Hands up if you’re excited for Fire&Ice InDurham? With the festival now a matter of days away, we’ve just announced the final two ice sculptures to be featured as part of the hotly anticipated trail across the City.

Having recently hosted a competition with schools across the county, two children from different schools in Durham will see their artwork turned into icy installations during the festival this weekend. How exciting?!

The first lucky winner is Elle McKinnel from Parkside Academy in Crook, with her interpretation of a Phoenix, inspired by the Harry Potter books penned by critically acclaimed author J.K. Rowling. The second sculpture to be featured at Fire&Ice InDurham is taken from the artwork of Helena Fleming, a pupil at St Leonard’s Catholic School in the City Centre. Using the ‘Manga’ style of drawing, she has created a cartoon comic character, part angel and part demon, using the popular Japanese style of animation.

If you’re coming to Fire&Ice InDurham over the course of the weekend, you’ll be able to see the competition winners’ sculptures at Magdalen Steps on Elvet Bridge. Elle’s depiction of the Phoenix will be on display during Friday 16th February between 10am and 4pm. Similarly, Helena’s Manga inspired cartoon character will be displayed on Saturday 17th February, again between 10am and 4pm for you to enjoy.

Everyone has their favourite childhood book and this competition has been a great way to engage with these youngsters to think about good old-fashioned books, the stories that capture their imaginations and the authors that inspire them, in a very digital-driven age of social media and the online world we live in. We’re thrilled for both Elle and Helena and hope that through this competition, all the children who have taken part will look back at the experience in years to come with fond memories, when they think back to their favourite childhood books too.

We hope you’ll agree, the brief of Literary Characters has really captured the children’s imaginations and we have been so impressed by the quality of the different entries from pupils at schools across the county. It was so hard to pick just two winners!

So, with the last two ice sculptures at Fire&Ice InDurham now confirmed, we’re quite literally on the final countdown before the festival returns to the City in its third iteration. There’s a palpable buzz in Durham at the moment and we’re really looking forward to welcoming visitors from near and far to the event – we’ve even seen people on social media commenting that they’re coming from as far as the North West especially for Fire&Ice InDurham.

It’s sure to be a great day out for all of the family to enjoy in this half term break with plenty for people to see and do with the return of Fashion InDurham, Live InDurham and of course, Chinese New Year too.

Don’t forget, if you’re planning a trip to Fire&Ice InDurham this weekend, you can download the trail map from our website now. Make sure you bring a copy with you, so you can follow the trail, see all the sculputres and not miss a thing during the jam-packed itinerary. Wrap up warm, put your best walking shoes on and we’re looking forward to seeing you soon!

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