The Thwackathon

The Thwackathon

Posted on behalf of Creative Fuse North East

The Thwackathon

Turn a Bridge into a Musical Instrument 

This is a call for participation in the Thwackathon, a hack day to turn the new ‘Northern Spire’ bridge in Sunderland into a music instrument. This event is the first of two hack days, with the second session taking place on Friday 27th April: participants are welcome to attend one or both days.

The Thwackathon is a day of creative innovation and experimentation to create mechanical and digital devices which will bow, twang and pluck the bridge. We are looking for people with diverse skills, e.g. engineers, designers, musicians, programmers, artists etc to come together to invent and make a series of prototypes for In-Spire - a concept proposed by artist Di Mainstone. The music produced by these devices will accompany a specially-written anthem written by musician Mandy Wigby for Northern Spire’s opening later in the summer. 

Read the press release for In-Spire here in the Sunderland Echo.

On the day you will spend time in FabLab Sunderland and gain access to all of the facilities (3D printing, Laser Cutting, CNC Mill, etc) and a range of exciting materials to invent, prototype and test your ideas. There will also be support from the FabLab team and the lead artist to help with construction and idea development. You will be fed and refreshed throughout the day and credited as having supported the project.

If you have any questions, please contact the event organiser Dominic Smith at

Getting there:

By Car: Hope St Exchange is located on Hind Street, off the A183 as it passes the University of Sunderland's City Campus. Parking is available on a first-come first-served basis within the University Pay and Display car park, which has a rate of £1.65 an hour, or within the nearby Bridges Shopping Centre multi-storey at £1.40 per hour:

By Metro: The nearest Metro stop is 'University' which is a 6-minute walk away from Hope St Exchange across the university's City Campus.

By Train: Sunderland's Train Station is a 10-minute walk away from Hope St Xchange, via the Bridges Shopping Centre.

By Bus: A number of buses operate in the Sunderland area, including the Sunderland Connect service which frequently serves Sunderland’s main attractions and destinations. Work out your best route using this handy journey planner from Go North East:

This activity is supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

20 Apr 2018 at 9:30am
until 20 Apr 2018 at 6:00pm
Hope Street Xchange
Hind Street

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