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Record breaking snow sculptors

A tree surgeon from Driffield has been competing with artists from all over the world alongside his close friend in his second snow sculpture competition of the month in January – and the pair made history by completing their creation in record time.

Justin Scott, and sculpting partner Martin Sharp, a fitness coach from York, were up against sculptors from Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, France and the USA in the Kiruna International Snow Sculpture Competition.

The pair completed their sculpture, called Figurative Animate X Three, inside two days, a new record for the long-running event, which takes place 140 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland.

The sculpture, an abstract human figure with three sides, was the second snow masterpiece created by Justin and Martin since the turn of the new year.

As reported in the Wolds Weekly, the pair had already competed in Shapes in White, an international snow sculpture competition in Austria, where their snow boat, Unsinkable 2, finished in ninth place.

Having arrived in Sweden on 24th January, Justin and Martin received a warm welcome from the locals and set to work on building their sculpture in ‘mild’ temperatures of –3C, as opposed to the usual lows of –23C.

They surprised everyone by setting a Kiruna record, giving them time to take part in some ski-dooing, dogsledding and a visit to the ice hotel.

Other activities included visiting a snow park designed by schoolchildren and watching a film that gave a view on Kiruna and promoted a local rock band.

“In Austria, we were working on top of a mountain at high altitudes, whereas here we were sculpting in a city with everyday life going on around us,” said Martin, on behalf of the pair.

“As it was lower altitude, we didn’t get tired as quickly so it felt easier and we were delighted to be the first to finish our sculpture in just two days.

“It took us about 15 or 16 hours in total, the snow was very soft, which meant we could pile through it quickly but the finish wasn’t as crisp as we’d hoped.

“There has also been a great sense of camaraderie between the sculptors with people sharing ideas and borrowing tools.

“The thing we have really enjoyed is that lots of people have been coming to watch the sculptures take form, including lots of children.

“There have been school parties coming to take a look and have a go at creating their own smaller snow sculptures and high school students worked with two sculptors to create a play park made out of snow.”

Although Justin and Martin were not named as the winner or runner-up, they were proud of their efforts.

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