A NEW buoy band is set to welcome visitors to the borough.
Three former marine buoys, covered in historic railway poster-style images of North Tyneside’s coasts, will be sited at the northbound exit of the Tyne Tunnel.
The £15,000 public art project is a joint venture by North Tyneside Council and Tyne Tunnel operator TT2.
Artist Lynda Nelson, of Jarrow, produced the designs, featuring images of St Mary’s Lighthouse, Tynemouth Priory and a surfer – painting the buoys by hand.
Mayor Linda Arkley said: “North Tyneside is the gateway to an amazing coastline. These buoys will be seen daily by tens of thousands of motorists and will help reinforce what a superb natural asset we have on our doorstep.”
Trevor Jackson, managing director of TT2, said: “The buoys will be the perfect finishing touch to our re-landscaped grounds once construction works for the New Tyne Crossing are complete.
“We’re delighted that a local artist was chosen to produce the eye catching artwork, which will offer a vibrant welcome to our customers as they arrive in North Tyneside.”
Lynda, 31, said: “It will be great to have my work seen by so many people. I am very excited about this project. Although I am used to painting large-scale murals, this project is quite unusual and is a great opportunity for me.
“Before I came up with the final design, I tried a lot of different ideas – a few simple ones and also a few complicated ones.
“Ultimately, I was influenced by 1920s and 1930s railway posters – in particular, the simple, blocky style and colours of them.
“The buoys are an unusual shape to paint on, but I’m used to painting on brickwork and don’t think it will be too difficult. I’m just looking forward to getting started.”
Prior to being painted, the 10ft-tall buoys will be shot-blasted, primed and base coloured at Northern Protective Coatings in Bill Quay, Gateshead.