Thursday, 12 May 2011

Success - Hundred's Cheers as The Walking Boat Steps Out of The River Thames

Today the ‘Walking Boat’, an extraordinary, kinetic work of art created by sculptor, Andrew Baldwin, strode onto the foreshore of the Thames at Tate Modern. This astonishing piece, a 40-ft walking boat two years in the making, was the culmination of the artist’s imaginative vision, determination and exceptional talent as sculptor and blacksmith. 

The ‘Walking Boat’ was welcomed by hundreds of spectators, who had gathered at the foreshore to see the unique spectacle. The boat was greeted with cheers as it stepped out of the river and heaved itself up on to the beach. Steered with a London Bus wheel, the 20-ton vessel was then skill fully walked ashore by its creator, at 1.20pm today. 
Photo credit: Dylan Woolf

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Final Preparations - Big Day Out Tomorrow

The last of the Walking Boat preparations are well underway. Andrew Baldwin has been carrying out mechanical checks, topping up diesel and there has been final safety briefings with the London Port Authority and the Thames River Police.

The Walking Boat is leaving Trinity Buoy Wharf on the 4pm tide on today. It is scheduled to arrive at London Bridge Pier at 5pm, where it will moor overnight ready for the Big Day. 

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Don't miss the Walking Boat - 12/5/11, 1.15pm, Tate Modern Foreshore

Following a stumble in October 2010, the Capital's first 'Walking Boat' will be returning to the foreshore of the Tate Modern. Previously tripped up by a falling tide and a shelved shoreline, the artist, Andrew Baldwin, has worked hard at redesigning the boat's Bow and Hull, to ensure success at the second attempt. We had a secret trial at the end of 2010, which proved a stroll, and have been waiting for the right tide to re-stage this event, ever since. 

The wait is now over...

Don't miss out on the Walking Boat, an extraordinary, kinetic work of art created by sculptor, Andrew Baldwin. His astonishing piece, a 40ft walking boat, will be sailed into the heart of London, where it will walk out of the Thames onto the river’s foreshore at Tate Modern. 

Join us on the River pathway to see this astounding 20-ton mechanical marvel on Thursday lunchtime from 1.15pm.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The Walking Boat is Coming - May 2011

We were going to schedule the 26th April with the PLA but we forgot about the Royal Wedding! Back to the tide tables for a date in May!

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Re-staging the Walking Boat Event

Following the success of the trial, we are now back in discussion with the PLA, consulting tide tables, times and the weather to find a suitable date. It looks like it might be an April date.

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Walking Boat Test a Success!

It did it! All Andrew's hard work and determination to overcome the boats exit onto the shoreline has paid off! 

Saturday, 11 December 2010

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Adjustments being made

All the adjustments being made will aid the boat's movement up the shore.  The 20ton boat needs to be able to slew across the beach foreshore but was instead digging itself into the riverbed as the mechanical legs pushed forward.

Sunday, 5 December 2010


In discussion with Port of London Authority about gaining permissions to stage a trail following the modifications. 

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Progress, progress

Andrew has been to work when the tide is out, shoring up the metal work inside before cutting through the hull on the outside, often at ridiculous hours late at night and early in the morning.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Thanks to Trinity Buoy Wharf & Urban Space Management

A special thank you to everyone at Trinity Buoy Wharf and Urban Space Management. There kind support has allowed Andrew to keep the Walking Boat moored there whilst he carries out the work.

Monday, 18 October 2010

What Next...

Over 10 weeks, in the freezing cold, in between tides, for three hours a time, twice a day, Andrew Baldwin is planning to work round the clock to make the modifications necessary to overcome the combination of the slope on the Tate foreshore and the boat's bow digging in on the foreshore.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

So what happened at the shore...

As the press release stated, Time and Tide waits for no Man, and this, combined with the shore's shelf meant that the boats legs could not get enough leverage to get the boats bow clear of the shelf. 

A willing crowd, a big thank you to you all

Credit: Willem van de Horst

The Walking Boat trips up!

Credit: Dylan Woolf
Time and tide wait for no man - and the creator of the capital’s first walking boat was no exception today.

Andrew Baldwin’s Walking Boat, a massive 40 foot, 20 ton salvage-built seafaring vessel, drew a huge crowd to the Thames foreshore to watch the red and white barge, turned work of art, walk its way out of the water using kinetic powered metal ‘feet’ . But the turning tide and the shelved shore outside the Tate halted the boat right on the edge of the water. The cogs turned and the levers raised and lowered, but the Walking Boat could only move a few feet and wasn’t able pull its full weight onto the beach.

Credit: Willem van de Horst
The mechanical wonder made four strenuous attempts to defeat the pull of the tide. Hundreds of people on the bank and looking out from the balconies of Tate Modern willed the artist Andrew Baldwin and his intricately handcrafted vessel forward, but the boat took its first movements, only to be driven back. The frustration for the artist was palpable – his two years building the mechanism, and a smooth sail from Sandwich up the Thames to East London had resulted in a perfect trial run. But today’s audience outside Tate Modern was to be disappointed.

Credit: Willem van de Horst
Tomorrow the Boat Will Walk – at Trinity Buoy Wharf in East London where the Walking Boat’s successful trial run took place.

Thanks to Willem van de Horst for his photographs of the attempted landing on Flickr

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Change of plan

Back to plan A - mooring at Queenbourgh because there is not enough tide. All fed and watered...just passing Whitstable.

Boat hopping complete

We pulled into quieter waters by Margate Sands and Ray has come onboard the 'Walking Boat' and Harvey's gone to warm himself up on the support boat, The Caren Louise'.

Now planning to carry on to Gravesend rather than stop off at Queenbourgh. Should be there by 2am.


Two failed attempts at crew swap, sea too choppy to move alongside each other. Onwards,  Goodbye Margate.

Boat hopping outside Margate

So we've decided that we should switch crew between the 'Walking Boat' and 'The Caren Louise,' our support vessel. Let's call it the luxury liner, Barry's Big Boat. Cushioned seating, kitchenette, living room, tv and a garage out the back! The 'Walking Boat' is a humble sea dwelling, we're sailing into the damp darkness with no cover from the elements.

A slow boat to Margate

Leaving Ramsgate

The 'Walking Boat' taking a rest

Ramsgate update

Arrived at Ramsgate at 4pm, having a cup of tea on shore! All going well so far. No men overboard yet! We now have to wait until the time is right tide wise for passing North Foreland. If this is missed timed the tide will hold us and we might well end up in the cliff!

See you in Queenbourgh in 6 hours. Looks choppy out there!

We're off!

All Aboard - The Walking Boat sets sail

The Launch took place at Sandwich Marina at 15.00. What a fantastic moment. Setting off to Ramsgate, should be arriving at 16.00. Be sure to look out for us!

Final preparations