Wind vanes (also known as weather vanes or weathercocks) have been used for thousands of years to show the wind direction.
How do they work?
The part of the design in front of the pivot point has a smaller surface area than the part behind it. The wind exerts more force on the larger end, moving the vane around so that the smaller end faces the direction from which the wind is blowing. The main points of the compass are indicated below, so that knowledgeable observers may be able to predict what type of weather will ensue.
It can be fun to look out for weather vanes, especially when they are particularly sculptural or decorative – we have some lovely examples in our villages.
The swans above are in Coln St Aldwyns, at Waterside.
Sometimes vanes are purely decorative, and do not move with the wind, like this peacock in
Southrop. The images can be fascinating, often reflecting the interests of the person who owns them.
Den’s father, Charlie Bartlett, made the cow wind vane found at Hannington Hill Farm, Quenington. It used to stand on the cow shed when it was a dairy farm, but is now in the stable yard.
Another special and personal wind vane is to be found in Coln St Aldwyns. Shortly after Terry & Fiona Davidson moved to the village, they had this created to celebrate Fiona’s love of teddy bears – which is also reflected in the name of their home, Bear’s Barn!
This humorous wind vane shows that pigs really can fly! It is another Quenington one, at Coneygar Barn.
Many of our village wind vane images are symbolic of the countryside and its activities.
Which is the odd one out?
Margaret Stranks – Editor