Published: 10:12, 25 September 2020
| Updated: 10:24, 25 September 2020
An incredible “lockdown snake” created by hundreds of villagers has been turned into a permanent memorial.
At the start of the pandemic when government restrictions confined people to their homes, mum Aimee Skinner and daughter Hannah Crawley decided to start assembling the installation in Boughton-under-Blean, situated between Faversham and Canterbury .
Hannah, 14, decorated a pebble to look like a snake’s head, which she placed on the pavement in Colonel’s Lane, along with a few other painted stones and a sign inviting other residents to join in.
The project soon captured the imagination of villagers of all ages, who added to the snake during their daily walks.
It quickly grew, amassing about 700 stones - each decorated with colourful pictures and messages of support and solidarity.
Now, Aimee has turned the snake into a permanent fixture.
After liaising with Kent County Council and the parish council, the mum of two set up a community fundraiser which generated hundreds of pounds for bricks and other supplies.
Helped by builders who gave their time for free, she and her children cleaned every pebble before covering them with a hardy resin, and cementing them down.
The project was finished on Saturday, when a plaque donated by the parish council was laid.
The snake now lies coiled on a bed of white gravel on the corner of Field End Place and Colonel’s Lane, where it will stand as a lasting reminder of the lockdown.
Aimee said: “I can’t believe something that started so small has turned into a massive snake memorial.
“With everything that’s going on in the world, it’s lifted everyone’s spirits.
“So many people have commented on how it’s made them smile.
“It was a long snake, running along a footpath, but we’ve got it coiled up now, almost like it’s gone to sleep.
“Even though we’ve all had to be apart, it’s brought our whole little village together.”