Creek: sounds of the estuary

We worked with Ed Jobling, collecting sound recordings from around the Estuary, which have been posted on Aproree, an international sound map and radio service, which you can access below.

Ed also created a series of sound compositions, designed to be listened to on headphones at specific places. Of course, they can also be enjoyed in the comfort of your own home.

Northam Beach Walk is designed to be listened to while sat beside the Estuary. It describes a journey across grass, gravel and pebbles to get to the water’s edge. While listening to it on site (assuming your headphones are not high spec) it can be hard to distinguish between recorded and live sounds, especially the wind as it whips past your ears. And it’s hard to resist layering the action that you see in front of you, onto the experience of listening.

The Skern Mud Flats Restaurant is designed to be listened while looking out on theSkern in Braunton Burrows. The piece was created from thinking about the mud flats as a banqueting suite for wading and sea birds, especially in winter, when large numbers of birds descend here from northern climes to feed on succulent worms and molluscs. Best appreciated with tea and biscuit in hand.

A journey around Instow is designed to be listened to while looking across from Appledore to Instow. It features a number of sounds which were recorded throughout Instow and we challenge you to accurately pinpoint not only the sounds but also the locations in which they were recorded.

To listen to the recordings, please click on the red link ‘open in radio aporee.’ This will take you to recording on the aporee site.


  • The edge of the Taw/Torridge Estuary. The recording was taken as the tide was turning, with the rhythm of the waves just beginning to gain momentum.

  • Westward Ho! beach. As the tide begins to come in, the water seems to fizz as the waves fill up small hollows that had been left in the sand as the waters receded earlier in the day.

  • Northam Burrows / Skylarks and Lambs. In spring the Burrows are teaming with life. With Skylarks on the decline in the UK, it’s wonderful to know that they are still doing well here.

  • Instow Dunes. Insects hovering, families playing on the beach – it’s as if the wind captures sounds and then they’re gone.

Instow Beach / Dog in Puddle. This ridiculous little black dog was digging away in a large puddle and at the same time attempting to catch a tennis ball that was bobbing on the surface.


Instow Beach / Rigging. I know that it doesn’t to all, but to me, sound of rope ting, ting, tinging against the mast speaks of summer holidays, baking sun and lazy days.

All recording were made by Ed Jobling.