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Bungay unveils cracking new month-long art trail

Bungay Black Dog Arts have created a chicken trail around the town in honour of the chickens that lived on the nearby Ditchingham roundabout.

PHOTO: Nick Butcher

Bungay Black Dog Arts have created a chicken trail around the town in honour of the chickens that lived on the nearby Ditchingham roundabout. PHOTO: Nick Butcher

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They once roamed proud on a roundabout, earning national fame for Bungay.

Bungay Black Dog Arts have created a chicken trail around the town in honour of the chickens that lived on the nearby Ditchingham roundabout.

 PHOTO: Nick ButcherBungay Black Dog Arts have created a chicken trail around the town in honour of the chickens that lived on the nearby Ditchingham roundabout. PHOTO: Nick Butcher

And now an innovative art project has been launched in memory of the fowl inhabitants of the so-called “chicken roundabout” in nearby Ditchingham.

The “Return of the Chickens” art trail will see 53 brightly painted wooden chickens placed in shop windows and other spots around Bungay for people to find during July.

Chickens were for decades a regular feature at the roundabout, 
but were moved on when the land around it was developed about five years ago.

Terry Wright, from the group Black Dog Arts which is organising the trail, said: “There aren’t any more chickens there, but it’s still known as the chicken roundabout.

“There has been much talk about some kind of memorial. We thought, Norwich has trails with dragons and hares and so on, so why not have a trail of chickens?”

After producing the plain wooden birds, they were distributed to Bungay businesses, who decorated them for the trail.

The designs have been inspired by everything from Australian Aboriginal dot paintings to 
fried eggs. Mrs Wright said: “Each one has its own personality, they are all completely different. The people that have decorated them have given them names and become quite attached to them.”

Visitors to Bungay will be able to pick up entry forms from participating shops, and go in the draw to win prizes if they find all the chickens.

Mrs Wright said the fowl lived at the roundabout for at least 50 years, and there were up to 70 of the birds at one point. They were regularly fed for more than 12 years by Ditchingham man Gordon Knowles.

After the chicken trail, which runs from next Saturday, July 2 to Sunday, July 31, the artworks will be auctioned off to benefit the River Waveney Trust at an event at the River Waveney Study Centre in Earsham on August 21.

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