This short film is part of Anne’s Bibliotreks commission, a creative interpretation of five walks across Cumbria’s county boundaries for Artful Ways.

Her line in the sand. Anne Waggot Knott (2021)

For 483 years, the Queen’s Guides of the Sands have provided safe passage across the treacherous, shifting sands of Morecambe Bay. Saturday 17th July 2021 marked the first day that this journey has been led by a woman: Joanne Hales, partner of current Queen’s Guide Michael Wilson. Michael was marshalling a group of runners, and entrusted the majority of the walking route to Joanne.

Thanks to Joanna, Michael and the Guide over Sands Trust for sparing a place on this wonderful walk, and for sharing their story. Please don’t cross the sands without a registered guide: it is dangerous. Visit for further information.

Poem Transcript (Film Audio)

Let’s go!
Strike out across the bay.
Stretching into the distance,
Your caravan of walkers.
They’re keen,
They’re shy,
They’re faintly apprehensive
Intrepid, chatty, buoyant,
Knowitalls and
Full of wonder
Streams of questions
From lipstick-wearers
Bakehouse bellies
Sunscreen slappers
Packed lunch wrappers
Seasoned stompers
Ecstatic dogs and
Quiet plodders

And you,
Our keeper of safe passage.
You cradle us within your family of cocklers, musslers,
And stoic tractor drivers.

Our leader, font of knowledge
With grinning kids on quadbikes
Brawn, brine,
Chit chat!
Splish splosh!

And then you can go home
and shut the door.

Take breath,
Sink down into the silence,
Ground yourself at home, your home.
Reclaim your bay.
This time, place and open space, today
It is yours, Joanne.

Click here to visit Anne’s Bibliotreks page.