Update: the shop has now ceased trading
“Walking on Water” is a new shop on Saltney High street selling unique ocean influenced art. Captain Gerrith Borrett constructs intricate models of sailing ships and sea creatures, all from driftwood that he salvages….
Suzi Borrett who met her husband 18 years ago said that Gerrith, who is from South Africa, has plenty of Naval experience. In South Africa he started off in the Navy and has been captained 2 round the world yachting voyages. From building models of pirate ships he eventually became the Captain of a real life sailing ship. That ship is The Earl of Pembroke which has featured in many films and TV shows, including Cloud Atlas and Hornblower. The ship will next be seen in Alice through the Looking Glass which is released in May. It was Suzi’s first visit to a film set, and she is disappointed she didn’t get to meet Johhny Depp.
“From building wooden ships, his dream eventually manifested in real life” says Suzi. The Captain says that the Ocean is “his life.” Suzi explained that he then sorts all of the collected sticks into piles. The pieces are constructed by screwing the sticks together with glue and sawdust used only to hide the screws.
Smaller sea horses take up to 2 hours to build, the larger ones between 3 and 4 hours. The wooden ships on display are intricately detailed and include windows made out of matchsticks.
The centrepiece of the shop is a dragon, which was built to honour their new Welsh location. It took 5 weeks to build and can be seen from the street, taking prime place in the shop window. Based on the dragaon on the Welsh flag, it was named “Jaxon” by a 7 year old competition winner. A golden eagle is the Captain’s next project.
The shop also carries art by some other local artists. Andy Longmuir works in wood and metal, and photographer Peter Hunt specialises in classic vessels such as trawlers, which are then displayed in shabby chic frames.
The driftwood creations are a fascinating sight ,and the process of turning random pieces of wood into beautiful art is a mark of the Captain’s talent. The shop opened 5 weeks ago and Suzi says there has been lots of interest so far, from pubs/bars and beach house owners. Eye catching and affordable , the couple are happily pursuing their dreams..”If you believe in it enough, it comes to fruition. But we’ve had some struggles on the way. Dreams can come true !”
Well worth the short trip over the Border. Walking on Water is located at 4 High Street Saltney.With thanks to John McNamara