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Hay bale superheroes pay tribute to NHS workers during pandemic

Masked marvels Spider-Man, Batman, Superwoman, Iron Man, Wonder Woman and Captain America are attracting visitors to a Co Tyrone field.

A group of hay bale superheroes have formed an unusual tribute to frontline workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Northern Ireland.

Masked marvels Spider-Man, Batman, Superwoman, Iron Man, Wonder Woman and Captain America are attracting visitors to a Co Tyrone field.

Superhero hay bales
Fiona McCafferty with daughter Chloe, and friend Carmel Nicholl with sons Kal-el and Rhys Garritty (Liam McBurney/PA)

They were created by the Two Castles Community Association near Newtownstewart.

Landowner John Gallagher said: “Every year we do a display for charity and it is always made out of the straw bales.

“In previous years we have done superheroes, teddy bear picnics and so on.

Superhero hay bales
John Gallagher (Liam McBurney/PA)

“There have been a lot of superheroes who stood up through lockdown.

“Everyday people – frontline workers, nurses, doctors, people in shops – to a large extent have put themselves at risk.

“We just consider them to be heroes so we have taken that theme on with this year’s display.”

Superhero hay bales
Lily-Anne Hedges, 11, has her picture taken with Spider-Man (Liam McBurney/PA)

The attraction at the side of a busy road raises money for charity and promotes a community festival.

The superheroes are designed to be representative of every person’s weapons to fight coronavirus using social distancing, washing hands and wearing a face covering.

The 12ft hay figures, designed by Shauneen Kilpatrick, were constructed in a field off the Newtownstewart bypass.

Superhero hay bales
Elayne McNicholl takes a picture of daughter Deirbhile and grandson Charlie next to Batman (Liam McBurney/PA)

Kal-el Garritty, eight, said: “Spider-Man is amazing. Everything is amazing.”

His mother Carmel Nicholl said: “Even superheroes have to be safe.”

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