Tayside and Central Scotland

Kelpie sculptures lit up for pyrotechnic launch event

kelpies Image copyright PA
Image caption The launch event is being held on Thursday and Friday evening

Scotland's biggest art installation has been lit up as part of a spectacular launch event.

At the first of two night-time events, artist Andy Scott's 300-tonne, 30m high Kelpie horse heads were brought to life by a light, sound and pyrotechnic display.

It was staged by Groupe F, a pyrotechnic outfit which lit up the Eiffel Tower at the Millennium.

The Kelpies, near Falkirk, officially open to the public on Monday.

The massive steel sculptures are part of the Helix, a £43m redevelopment of about 350 hectares of land between Falkirk and Grangemouth.

They are being launched at a two-night arts event called HOME, which also celebrates the opening of the John Muir Way, a new national pathway stretching across the central belt.

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Media captionTime-lapse photography capturing the installation of The Kelpies

It is hoped the Helix will attract 350,000 visitors a year, bringing in £1.5m of extra tourism revenue.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The Kelpies form the spectacular centrepiece of the new Helix development on the outskirts of Falkirk
Image copyright PA
Image caption Each of the sculptures, which were created by Andy Scott, weighs 300 tonnes
Image copyright PA
Image caption They pay homage to the tradition of working horses which once pulled barges along Scotland"s canals

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