The spectacular Carnoustie Butterfly was unveiled at the seafront by Patricia Sawers, Lord-Lieutenant of Angus and features more than 1400 decorated stones created by local people and organisations.
It follows the laying of a single stone during the pandemic last year, which grew to become the ‘Carnoustie Caterpillar’ as other stones were laid alongside it as locals and visitors came together to share their collective support and experiences of living through such difficult times.
Every stone tells its own story and together they provide a record of the hopes, fears and resilience of the community, expressing messages of support, hope and solidarity.
More than 50 organisations and groups are represented along with more than a thousand stones contributed by individuals and families.
In September 2020, when the painted images began to fade, they were collected and carefully restored and varnished. These stones were repainted and used to create the body of the butterfly. Names of children recorded on the base of some stones were transferred onto the surface of the black stones.
Local company J&P Metal Technologies then created moulds scaled up to the shape and dimensions of the Small Blue, a species conserved and protected along stretches of the Angus coastline, including Carnoustie.
The stones were then set in more than half a tonne of acrylic epoxy resin and, measuring 6m by 5m, forms what is believed to be one of the largest public artworks of its kind.
The entire project represents more than 900 volunteers hours and involved support from the NHS Community Innovation Fund, Seagreen Wind Energy, Carnoustie Community Council, Mann Tree and Gardening Services, Mearns Plant Hire, Clarks of Barry and DJA Electrical Arbroath.
Mrs Sawers said: "I think it’s amazing for Carnoustie. I remember walking past the original caterpillar during lockdown, which transformed into this magnificent butterfly, a fabulous tribute to the NHS".
Further information can be found at www.easthavenangus.com/about-5.