The Wrecking Season, a film by Nick and Jane Darke
Image Source: BBC
Excerpt, from the BBC
The North coast of Cornwall in the UK is one the best collection points in the world for long haul drift. When a SW gale blows for three days, artefacts and natural objects from Labrador down to the Amazon wash up on these shores.
This film follows playwright, beachcomber and lobsterman Nick Darke, onto the beach during one stormy winter and records all his discoveries, tracing everything he finds along the coastline back to its source, via the telephone and the internet.
After seeing this film, stepping onto a beach may never be the same again.
Until his untimely death, Nick lived on Cornwall’s rugged and beautiful north coast. He came from a long line of seafarers and he still practised the right of ‘wrecking’, an ancient pastime that intriguingly put him in touch, through phone calls and the internet, with fishermen and oceanographers round the world.
This haunting film, photographed by Nick’s artist wife Jane, which uses atmospheric and evocative archive shot by his father, captures a unique portrait of his daily work as he combed the wild seashore for the wonderful hardwoods, exotic sea beans, and fascinating artefacts. But also, poignantly displays the vast amount of plastic pollution, fishing paraphernalia, marine plastic debris of all kind, ceaselessly deposited on Cornwall’s beaches by the ocean’s long haul drift.
He and his wife, the painter and film-maker Jane Darke, built up a unique picture of coastal communities around the Atlantic, and the flotsam and jetsam that travels between them, making friends with fishermen, scientists, oceanographers and fellow beachcombers.
It’s an uplifting tribute to a remarkable man whose house, garden and whole existence are full of the wonderful things he found and whose data and observations feed into important global ocean research and investigations.