A floating sculpture resembling a terraced house will travel the Leeds - Liverpool canal to mark a two million pound award from Arts Council England which secures the future of art projects on the region's inland waterways. The Ark is made from wood and celebrates the heritage, landscape and people of Pennine Lancashire. Its intricate wall carvings are inspired by the Paisley textile pattern, a nod to the influx of South Asian immigrants who came to Lancashire in the 1960s and 70s to work in the textile industry, whilst the roof is a living meadow derived from grasses found in the region's disused quarries. Inside The Ark, five films, The Keepers, follow local people ranging from fell runners, steam operatives, a former mill worker, a park officer, a heritage enthusiast, an Asian interpreter and a retired teacher who all have a special connection to the area.
As well as travelling on the canal, The Ark structure will also mysteriously pop up in Blackburn and Burnley town centres as it passes by where a whole host of events will take place including a film screening and affordable art fair. It will also coincide with the Blackburn's Big Planting Bee which will see the community come out to take part in a mass planting of bee friendly plants.