12 February 2018

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018

FIRE and ICE in Durham is a stunning and spectacular FREE event that sees the City come to life, with an ice sculpture trail lit by flaming beacons weaving its way through the historic streets of Durham. This year it is returning to Durham for the third time during half-term on Friday 16 and Saturday 17 February.

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018


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Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival

Durham 16-17 Feb 2018

This year there is a literary theme for Fire and Ice in Durham – Paddington Bear was announced first. My youngest is a very big Paddington fan and was very excited at the news! Our Paddington may be getting another trip out – last time he went to Buckingham Palace!


Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Paddington Bear

There will be 10 ice sculptures in total carefully carved by the team at Glacial Arts, which worked on TV show A Games of Thrones and placed around the City seeing the trail lit by flaming beacons. Other characters are from Nicholas Nickleby, Snow White, The Gruffalo, The Wizard of Oz, Lord of the Rings, James and the Giant peach, Game of Thrones, William Shakespeare and A Short History of Nearly Everything.

Here are some of our pictures from last year!

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018


What will I see at Fire and Ice in Durham?

In total, the sculptors will bring 5 tonnes of ice to Durham approximately 5000 litres of water to build the following characters for Fire and Ice 2018

Paddington Bear on North Road
A marmalade-loving bear from Darkest Peru, who was created by the late Michael Bond. He first appeared in the children’s book A Bear Called Paddington in October 1958, making 2018 the brand’s 60th birthday.

The Gruffalo in Prince Bishops Shopping Centre
One of the world’s best-loved monsters, created by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, The Gruffalo was published in 1999. A modern classic, both the little brown mouse and monster have become stars of stage and screen, as well as story-time favourites. The Gruffalo weighs 750kgs and stands 2m tall!

James and the Giant Peach at Elvet Bridge
Mr Earthworm appears in Roald Dahl’s first famous book for children and is one of a number of creatures James meets aboard the Giant Peach. “He hates to be happy. He is only happy when he is gloomy. Now isn’t that odd?”

A Game of Thrones on Framwelgate Bridge
The Night’s King is the leader of the White Walkers, in the series of fantasy novels by American author George R. R. Martin, called A Song of Ice and Fire. He is best known from the hugely popular television fantasy drama ‘Game of Thrones’.

A Short History of Nearly Everything on Palace Green
Bill Bryson as he appears on the front cover of his bestselling book that explores everything from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization. He was the former Chancellor of Durham University and once famously wrote: ‘Why, it's a perfect little city. If you have never been to Durham, go there at once. Take my car. It's wonderful.’

William Shakespeare on Framwelgate Bridge
An English poet, playwright and actor, Shakespeare is widely regarded as one of the greatest writers of all time. In 1998, the 1623 first folio collection of works was stolen from the Durham Cathedral Library. Reportedly worth £15m, the folio was returned 10 years later when it was shown to staff at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC.

Nicholas Nickleby in Millennium Square
Charles Dickens visited Barnard Castle, County Durham in 1838 with illustrator Halbot K. Browne, when he was researching Nicholas Nickleby. It is widely believed that the character Wackford Squeers was inspired by William Shaw, Headmaster of Bowes Academy at that time, and the school was the basis for the author’s depiction of Dotheboys Hall.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz on Elvet Bridge
The Tin Woodman (or Emperor Nicholas III of the House of Chopper), was invented by L. Frank Baum, author and creator of the Oz legacy. He was introduced in the first Oz book titled The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, published in 1900. In this sculpture, he has already met the Wizard and has his heart.

Snow White in the Market Place
Stand behind the Magic Mirror and ask ‘Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who in this land is fairest of all?’. Cameras at the ready, take a picture and tweet your image using the hashtag #FireAndIce and they’ll share your snaps across the land! Could you be the fairest of all?

The Lord Of The Rings at Durham Cathedral
Gandalf (Norse: ‘Elf of the Wand;) is a wizard that first appears in J. R. R. Tolkien’s fantasy novel The Hobbit (1937). In the sequel, The Lord of the Rings (1954) he is initially known as Gandalf the Grey, but returns from death as Gandalf the White.


Where should I go at Fire and Ice?

You’ll find sculptures across the city in Millennium Square & the Market Place, on Elvet Bridge & Framwelgate Bridge, at the centre of Prince Bishops shopping centre, also on North Road, Saddler Street, Silver Street, and outside of Durham Cathedral on Palace Green.


Just keep an eye out for the flames, and beside them you’ll find Nicholas Nickleby, Snow White, The Gruffalo, The Wizard of Oz, Lord of the Rings, James and the Giant peach, Game of Thrones, William Shakespeare and A Short History of Nearly Everything, Paddington Bear AND frozen chocolate.



Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018


What can I do at Fire and Ice in Durham?

  1. Wander around the city's medieval streets to see the ten different carefully hand-carved ice sculptures depicting some of the nation’s best-loved literary characters. 
  2. Watch the live ice carving demonstrations Its not just any ice that is on show at Fire and Ice in Durham either. The ice sculptures are being created by Glacial Arts - the creatives behind the ice work in Game of Thrones and you can see their team in action too at the festival. The boys were engrossed last year and we had to keep going back to see how the ice sculptor was getting on! The demonstrations take place between 1pm & 5pm in the Market Place. 
  3. You can also get involved too. There are blocks of ice to try out ice-carving yourself. Have-a-go carving in Millennium Place between 12.00pm – 5.00pm 
  4. Take a selfie with Snow Whites mirror then share it across social media using the hashtag #FireAndIce to be in with a chance of winning a special prize from Moon Jewellery. You’ll be able to stand behind the mirror, then thanks to the way the ice has been carved, your image will be distorted. 
  5. See if you can carve the ice to free the chocolate from the frozen block (from 10am in Millennium Square). There are 120 chocolate bars in each one? That’s a total of 240 chocolates over the course of the festival! These blocks take four days to create and the sculptors have to position each one in the freezing water by hand This year there will be more than one block of chocolate so visitors on Saturday won’t be disappointed if it is all chipped away the day before.

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018

Is there a Grand Finale to Fire and Ice?

Each evening in the Market Place the festival will end with a spectacular grand finale - a mesmerising 30min multimedia show featuring music, fire, dancing waters, lighting and projection the show - in the Market Place outside of St Nicholas’ Church.


5.00pm – 5.10pm Fire performer in Market Place 

5.15pm – 5.25pm Short performance of the grand finale in the Market Place which is child-friendly 

5.45pm – 5.55pm Fire performer in the Market Place 
6.00pm – 6.15pm Extended performance of the grand finale in the Market Place. 


This second show that is more suitable for adults and older children - as some effects used may be frightening to younger ones.

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018

Does it clash with Chinese New Year Celebrations?

Yes, it is the same day as the celebrations but it does not clash! As this year, Fire&Ice InDurham coincides with Chinese New Year across the City and visitors on Saturday afternoon will be able to witness the traditional lion dance while it wows the crowds in the Market Place on Saturday 17th February, set against the backdrop of Fire&Ice In Durham’s water jets and fiery flames, used in the grand finale shows.


What is the best time to go to Fire and Ice?

The ice sculptures are unveiled at 10 am on Friday 16 February and Saturday 17 February. Obviously, the sculptures are open to the elements, so they’re in the best condition in the morning, as the rate at which they melt varies massively upon the weather. Last year they had melted a lot by Saturday afternoon due to windy weather. However, there is plenty to do right up until the Grand Finale.

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018


How Do I Get to Fire and Ice in Durham?

Durham City is served by three Park and Ride sites on the key routes into the city. These are situated at Belmont, Sniperley and Howlands. A direct bus service runs every 10 minutes to the city centre from each site. For only £2 per person, you can park until 7.00pm, get unlimited travel on the park and ride buses for the day and even use the Cathedral Bus for free. Under 16s are free if they're accompanied by an adult over 21. The Park and Ride services are free after 9.30am on the Friday and all day Saturday for concessionary bus pass holders.

There is also a train station with regular services to Newcastle Chester le Street and Darlington. There are regular buses and also plenty of city centre parking too.


Are there any deals on Durham during Fire and Ice?

There are lots of special offers and discounts available to inDurham Loyalty Card holders. There is a wide range of discounts available from the participating Durham businesses ranging from food and drink, retail, hair and beauty and other services. The InDurham Loyalty Card costs £5 for 12 months’ worth of discounts. We used ours recently in JD Wetherspoon and saved the same amount as the card costs!

Everything You Need to Know - Fire and Ice Festival - Durham 16-17 Feb 2018


Where are you heading to during half-term?


Deb x

1 comment:

  1. Fab guide Debbie - we can't wait! It's giving us a good excuse to explore the rest of Durham too.

    ReplyDelete