Wildlife photographer Ian McCarthy who has worked on Blue Planet and Planet Earth will appear at Wildlife Arts Festival at Otley Courthouse

An award-winning wildlife filmmaker who has worked on Blue Planet and Planet Earth will appear at the UK's first arts festival about wildlife in Leeds.

Friday, 10th September 2021, 4:09 pm

Ian McCarthy will appear at the Wildlife Arts Festival on Saturday, October 2, at Otley Courthouse.

The festival, organised by Wildlife Friendly Otley, will celebrate the town's wildlife with inspiring displays by local artists, photographers, sculptors and craftmakers, while Otley writers and poets will give readings of work featuring wildlife and nature.

It will be a full daytime and evening event culminating in a presentation and talk by Mr McCarthy, one of the UK’s top wildlife cameramen and filmmakers.

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Otley Courthouse, where the festival will take place.

Neil Griffin, education officer for organisers Wildlife Friendly Otley said: “There are many talented people in Otley who are joining us to celebrate the beauty and wonder of wildlife in a wide a variety of creative media including the visual and craft arts, the written and spoken word, poetry, photography and film.

“We hope the Wildlife Arts Festival will be a successful addition to the diverse range of festivals that Otley is famous for.

"As far as we know, it’s the first festival of its kind in the country. If it’s successful, our vision is to expand the festival and in future live music and more involvement from Otley children.”

Admission to the festival at Otley Courthouse will be free for the daytime exhibition, displays and the performances by writers and poets.

Tickets for the evening headline event featuring Mr McCarthy will be £10, available through the Courthouse.

Individual artists taking part include Kate Broughton, Carole Gaunt, Kim Coley, River Six, Amy Wilson (embroidery), Janis Goodman (etchings), Frances Taylor (mosaics), Amelia Thackeray (embroidery), James Hamilton (soundscapes), Shane Green (wood sculptor), and Huw Williams (photography).

Gemma Bassett, marketing manager of Otley business and event sponsors, Sinclairs, said: “We’re proud to be supporting the first Wildlife Arts Festival.

"We’re passionate about helping our environment - not only through using responsibly sourced materials and processes in our manufacturing but also by supporting our local community with events to raise awareness”.

The festival is being supported by and will feature work by many of Otley’s creative groups and societies including Otley Camera Club, the Chevin Watercolour Group, Otley Writers, Otley Poetry Stanza and Otley Sewing Collective.

Information about the festival can be found at wildifefriendlyotley.org.uk/festival.