A TEAM of ecologists and community artists will hold a summer celebration of the curious marine life under Ryde Pier

The Under the Pier event, run by Arc, Artecology and The Common Space, was founded six years ago and has become a popular annual event.

Each year, at low tide, hundreds of people and dozens of marine species come together for a mad, magic outdoor adventure.

Checking the pier for anemones, the eel grass for stalked jellyfish, and making it all the way to the end to explore the mythical ‘sponge gardens,’ have become a firm fixture on the Island’s wildlife calendar.

All are welcome at the free event — all you need to join in are nets, buckets and wellies.

Claire Hector, from Arc and Artecology, said: "We started Under the Pier to help people celebrate the place, character and the remarkable natural world at Ryde Pier.

"There’s been a huge, global increase in awareness of marine biodiversity since then, and Under the Pier is a great reminder you don’t have to travel far to learn more.

"At an Island gateway, alongside Ryde’s shops and arcades, there’s this extraordinary example of the UK’s intertidal zone, unique in its long sandflats and in the way the 200-plus-year-old pier provides toe-holds and habitats for such a range of marine wildlife."

Ian Boyd, Arc and Artecology lead ecologist, said: "Our work is in integrating wildlife, landscape and communities to shape better places. Under the Pier is a simple, happy example of all that, and of the principles that help make the Isle of Wight a fantastic UNESCO Biosphere Reserve — a creative, resourceful coastal community protecting and celebrating its unique environment and biodiversity."

The event takes place next Friday, August 30, 3.30pm to 6pm, come rain or shine, under the west side of pier.

Bring a net and a bucket and wear wellies — and expect to get splashed.

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