Page last updated at 14:57 GMT, Tuesday, 1 July 2008 15:57 UK

Horses inspire landmark sculpture

Andy Scott with Duke and Barron, Getty Images

An artist aiming to create the world's largest horse sculptures as part of a project in central Scotland has met his equestrian models.

Andy Scott, the man behind the Heavy Horse sculpture on the M8, will base his work on Barron and Duke, horses on loan from Glasgow City Council.

The 35m high Kelpie heads will form part of the 25m Helix project on land between Falkirk and Grangemouth.

The initiative is a collaboration between Mr Scott and British Waterways.

The functional giant heads, complete with flowing manes, would be the same size as the renowned Falkirk Wheel visitor attraction and would form an integral part of the boat lift mechanism at the eastern entrance to the Forth and Clyde canal.

Two heads would rock back and forwards to displace water from a lock chamber allowing boats to move to and from Scotland's lowland canal network.

Waterway folklore

The Kelpie theme was chosen not only for the role the water horse played in waterway folklore but also to pay respect to the role of the heavy horse throughout Scottish history.

Mr Scott studied the two Clydesdale horses to finalise his drawings for the projects and to make sure the anatomy of his horses were accurate and to scale.

He said: "This will help me perfect the form of the 3m working models. It will ensure that when scaled up to full size at 30m the Kelpies reflect the beauty and power of these magnificent horses.

"The Clydesdales have been a tremendous source of inspiration for several of my equestrian sculptures, and this project takes my favourite theme to new heights."

As well as the Heavy Horse, which sits at the side of the M8 between Glasgow and Edinburgh, Mr Scott has created various other pieces in Australia and Spain.

The Helix project received 25m funding from the Big Lottery Fund's Living Landmarks programme.

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