Summer Spirit as Cley calls to art and nature lovers


Wednesday 27 June, 2018


Just five weeks until our long summer weekend of wildlife and creativity at Cley! Thursday 2nd till Sunday 5th August.

Inspired by the unique North Norfolk landscape and with the  Aspinall Centre as its hub, Cley Calling Summer Spirit is a festival of writing, art, photography, music and performance all inspired by the natural world.  Each event in the festival reflects nature in a different way, through the eyes, the voice, the fingertips or the mind of a different artist.

Explore full calendar of events now!

Cley Calling Summer Spirit





For families, a two-day workshop will see one of the bird hides at Cley become a giant pinhole camera, with an exhibition of photos created. On the Saturday we are celebrating marine wildlife, with a free full day of ‘Ocean Commotion’ on the beach.

There will be performances from musician Toby Hay; and John Hinton will sing his ‘Ensonglopedia of Science’. Bringing her new book Eye of the Shoal, Helen Scales comes to Cley Calling to destroy the myth that fish are brute, unthinking creatures and to enchant us with the watery secrets of their lives.

North Norfolk artist Amelia Mills is enthralled by the shifting moods and shapes of the sea. For Cley Calling she will deliver a live demonstration of her unique style of capturing the North Sea waves in paint and exhibit her work in the Aspinall Centre for two weeks.

For some lovers of the wild, engaging with nature involves detailed study, description and naming. With its mix of grazing marsh, saltmarsh and reedbed, Cley is not only a celebrated site for birds. Its varied habitats are also home to many scarce or little-known species of moth; so experts will be on hand during the festival to open their live traps and share a haul of moths whose beauty is matched only by the strange, poetic names.

Even less well known than moths are solitary bees, many of which are tiny and inhabit vanishing remnants of habitat. Nick Owens, author of Bees of Norfolk and Cley local, will lead a Cley Calling workshop on bee identification, aimed at complete beginners and established bee-lovers alike. We’ll be all abuzz with bee crafts and activities for families during the Friday too.

There is even more to this celebration of all things wild in North Norfolk and of the wild creativity of people faced with nature: guided walks; a beach clean; barbecue on the terrace; wildlife watching; the summer spirit strong at Cley Marshes.

This is the third year of Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Cley Calling festivals. View the full events listing or call the NWT Visitor Centre at Cley on 01263 740008.

Cley Marshes centre manager, Ewan Carr said: “The Cley Calling celebration will show off this great landscape and encourage people of all ages to engage with wildlife, nature and the creative responses it inspires. Please come along and enjoy a range of events, many for free, all with a stunning Cley backdrop.”


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