Treasures From The Shoreline

By Bernie Bell

In this year’s on-line Orkney International Science Festival, there are a number of events about how to make imaginative use of things we find on the beach – shore-line Wombling, if you like!

Mike and I do a lot of this – bringing things home, either for use as decoration, or for practical  use.  One thing we could never work out a use for, is those containers – vaguely rectangular – solid plastic – must be useful?  And then The Orkney Skylark (aka Catherine Wells) came up with this………

Treasures from the Shoreline events include:-


Among other things – this workshop will show us how to make use of all that old fishing net, snarling up the coastline.  Though, local man Mark Cook does a good job of this, single-handedly!

ocean plait using 30m of rope by Mark Cook


This event tells of how the wool from North Ronaldsay seaweed-eating sheep, is made into yarn.

And….how ocean plastic can be re-used, which reminded me of this…..


Basically, the wonderful things that anyone can find, when walking on a beach.  One of our prize finds, was a coconut!  It was still ‘hairy’ when we found it, but a few Orkney winters have smoothed it off.

Where did it come from?  How did it end up on Scapa Beach?


Exactly what it says it is – including riches of all kinds –

Here’s a selection of pics of useful things we’ve made from shore-line finds…..

And some things which just look good – or, I think they do!  Including ‘A Brick’ – geddit? 

And, of course, taking and making with these things, reduces rubbish on the beach, and, therefore, in the sea.

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