My name is James Wright. I am a third year student at the university of Edinburgh studying music technology. One of my projects this semester was to produce a soundwalk, basically to take a walk and record all the sounds on the way. I chose to walk around my hometown of St Andrews. My route stops by at some of my favourite places when I was growing up there. To listen to individual stops use the drop down menu above. To see some photos from the walk click on photo gallery above. To see exactly where I walked check out the map below. Hope you enjoy.
Here is the walk in its entirety:
We start the walk on the beach in front of the aquarium and the seafood restaurant. We listen to the waves gently tumbling onto the shore, a bird singing, and my footsteps crunching in the sand. At 1.45 minutes we stop at a very loud generator. I had never even really noticed it before, but at that moment I was encapsulated by the very full sound it produced. At 4.10 minutes we pass a very old truck struggling to reverse out of tight spot. I believe it was a five point turn before he revved away in delight. As we walk along the Scores towards castle sands, at around the 5.00 minute mark, it begins to sound like my footsteps are producing an echo, but in fact its a women in high heels walking just out of sync with me across the street. We can hear a church bell ring in the distance at 10.27 minutes as we begin our decent down to my favourite beach in town.
We reach the castle sands and hear the sound of the waves hitting the rocks and sand, and the resultant fizz of the water. We walk out along the edge of a man made swimming pool that has plenty of seaweed to slip and squelch on. I knock some stones into the water and we hear the resulting plop. We can also hear a plane in the distance, and lots of seagulls cawing accompanied by pleasant tweeting from other little birds. In juxtaposition to the tranquil sounds heard on the beach, at 14.30 minutes heading towards the Ice Cream shop in the centre of town, we hear mainly loud traffic sounds and snippets of people’s conversations. At 19.30 minutes we enter the grounds of the ruin of St Andrews Cathedral. I drop 20p into the well there. We listen to the sound of it landing on a big pile of change at the bottom. At 22.06 minutes we hear me try to sneak into the tower of the cathedral but the turnstiles are full proof and I abandon my plans.
After we leave the cathedral (25.00 minutes), we walk down to the harbour and we hear the sound two men chatting and a fisherman power washing his old rusty boat. At 31.00 minutes we our now walking along the east sands. The waves crash louder here than the other beaches. A young couple decided it was a good idea to go for a swim as it was valentines day. As a result we can hear them in the distance screaming with shock at the temperature of the sea as they dive in. We can also hear another older couple commenting on them saying “Well that’s something different for Valentines Day”. We then head up to a play park next to the sailing club where the walk comes to an end.