Project launched to record the sounds of our coastline

Druridge Bay beach
Druridge Bay beach

Residents are being asked to record the sounds that shape and define our relationship with the North-East coast in a three-month crowd-sourced project launched today.

The nationwide Sounds of Our Shores project is being run by the National Trust, National Trust for Scotland and the British Library.

Sounds from the North East can be uploaded on to the first UK coastal sound map, hosted on
It could be the chatter of seabirds on the Farne Islands, gentle waves lapping the shores on Druridge Bay or the sound of the foghorn at Souter Lighthouse. All of these sounds will be added to the British Library Sound Archive.

The coastal sound map project coincides with the 50th anniversary of the National Trust Neptune Coastline Campaign.

Launched in May 1965, the Trust now manages 775 miles of coast in England, Wales and Northern Ireland including around 17 miles in the North East.

Musician, producer and founder member of Human League and Heaven 17, Martyn Ware, will be using the sounds to create a brand new piece of music for release in February 2016.

He said: “I’ve had a deep connection with the coast all of my life. As a kid growing up in Sheffield, we’d go on family holidays to Scarborough or Skegness; I can still remember the sounds that filled our days at the seaside.

“There is something emotionally deep about our connection with the coast which has shaped our identity. That is what is so exciting about this new commission and I want to capture the sensory nature of the coastline, reflecting the diversity and beauty of the sounds of our shores.”

Sounds recorded, whether on a smartphone, tablet or handheld recorder, can be uploaded to the map via the audioBoom website or app (they are both free and easy to use). The sounds will then appear on the map, which will be hosted on the British Library website.