Monday, October 4, 2010

Thievery Part 2 - last day of Deptford X

More miserable rain Sunday morning...I got a call from Charles Hayward...his wife had just crossed the Ha'Penny Hatch and seen two blokes down in the mud. Looked like they were stealing plates. Charles had to call me a few times on all the different numbers he had for me before I woke up. By then he was on the trail of the thieves who were now walking through our estate struggling to carry two carrier bags with about 30 plates in them! Leila Galloway was also about making preparations for her Deptford X event on the estate which was scheduled for 2pm. Leila apparently apprehended the guys and made them put down their hoard. The guys ran off and Leila came upstairs to let me know, whilst Charles moved the heavy loads to a safe hiding place (under my car)...

It was obviously the same characters that Steve Lewis saw yesterday...only this time their efforts had been thwarted. It turned out they had accessed the Creek via a ladder from the bridge on the eastern bank and removed mostly all of the plates on that bank. It must've been hard work for them since the ladder stops more than 6 feet above the mudbank and they appeared to have had no waders. Their ingenuity has to be admired.

However, it was the last day of the festival, the weather was awful, and it hardly seemed worth putting the plates back in the Creek. I went over to the Centre at around 1.30pm to see if there was still going to be a Lowtide Walk. The weather brightened and the walk went ahead. Because there had been so much rain, the mud had been flushed out and all sorts of new flotsam and jetsam had surfaced. I collected the largest haul yet of blue and white...only one of the fragments collected had come from the installation.

Originally I had thought that this Sunday was going to be the best day to see the piece for anyone attending Deptford X. The tide was not due in till 7.30pm. And although it was the last day of the festival I had intended to leave the dismantling of the project till the next weekend, and spend this week installing a webcam to make a film of the tides going in and out over the plates.

But I feared that if I put the stolen plates back in, and before the webcam could be set up, the thieves would be back today to remove them again...they might even be back today to remove what they had left on the western bank. Of course if I'd not had to work (for money) last week I'd've set up the webcam already and would have had the thieves on a feed!

So the decision was made to dismantle the installation after the walk...obviously this job was made much easier because almost half the installation had already been removed by the tea leafs!

Here are the last two teacups...

By 7pm, the Creek was empty of Willow and the festival over.

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