Landscape artwork celebrating the Tour de France now installed

July 2014

Image for press release
(NOTE: This is an archived press release.)

Writtle College’s huge landscape artwork celebrating the Tour de France’s passage past the historic institution is now finished and ready for the helicopter flyover!

The College has created the giant stylised image of a racing cyclist out of more than 300 bales of haylage in a field on its 220-hectare estate. The aim is for the artwork to be viewed from the helicopters following the Tour de France as it goes past Writtle on Monday <7 July>.

The project – which received funding from Active Chelmsford – has been created in a field near to Roxwell Road.

Today <4 July>, seven Year 6 pupils from nearby Writtle Junior School cycled around the artwork for a time-lapse film being put together by Writtle School of Design – the flagship design school based at the College. This will show the artwork under construction and has been filmed from a scaffolding tower, kindly supplied by Little Waltham-based D&B Scaffolding.

Nick Taylor, headteacher at the school, said: “We were really pleased to help out with this fantastic art project celebrating such an historic day for Writtle! It was a hot day but the children did brilliantly cycling over the rough terrain of the field and are thrilled to think they will be featured on the film, a lasting memento of this major event.”

The dynamic abstracted image of a cyclist moving at speed was designed by one of the Contemporary Art and Design degree students at the College, Georgina Elizabeth, following a competition. The design was pixelated and then laid out on a giant grid in the field, with each pixel being a bale – with the whole image only being seen from the air. The bales, which were put in place using a forklift truck, are from the College’s own fields as well as those kindly donated by local feed merchants Thorogood’s.

WSD will also create another film of the helicopter fly over so there is a legacy from the day the Tour de France went past the College’s estate.

• The College has recently launched a Foundation degree in Cycling Performance (subject to validation from the University of Essex). This two-year course is designed so students can pursue their cycling ambitions while studying. Find out more at