Schoolchildren clean up Wellingborough underpass with colourful mural

Pupils from Ruskin Academy in Wellingborough joined a professional graffiti artist to paint a mural to help make a difference to their local environment.

Wednesday, 3rd October 2018, 2:15 pm
Updated Thursday, 4th October 2018, 5:52 am
Some of the pupils by the underpass
Some of the pupils by the underpass

17-year old Amy from Wellingborough was concerned by the graffiti on the bridge on Queensway so contacted Wellingborough Council (BCW) and its partners Wellingborough Norse and Wellingborough Police to find a solution.

Organisations worked with pupils from Ruskin Academy to pilot a scheme, which involved the pupils painting over the graffiti on the bridge with art that highlights their future aspirations and what the town means to them.

A professional graffiti artist helped the youngsters to create a memorial that will inspire passers-by and improve their local environment.

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Pupils from Ruskin Academy working on the underpass

Head of school Mrs Angela Watts said: “The opportunity to reflect and share our positive school values within the local community and send key messages such as ‘be safe,’ ‘bounce back’ and ‘take responsibility’ gives our children a sense of ownership and responsibility for their local environment.

“We are grateful to the local police, BCW and Wellingborough Norse for inviting us to be part of this and for their support in creating the wonderful artwork.”

Children at the school were over the moon about their creation and Lily Lee from Year 6 said: “I hope our work brightens the days of people who use the underpass and that our positive messages radiate beyond our school gates.”

Ruskin Academy, who recently became part of the Lion Academy Trust, are keen to continue their commitment to supporting their local community and children and staff are already on the lookout for the next opportunity.

The finished artwork

17-year old Amy said: “I have lived in Kilnway for more than eight years, and I have seen an increase with rude graffiti on the subway leading to Ruskin Academy.

“I wanted to do something to help combat this and so got in touch with the council to find out what we can do.

“By working with pupils and a professional graffiti artist to paint a mural over the graffiti, I hope this will help the community to look and feel safer.”

Wellingborough Council leader, Cllr Martin Griffiths, said: “We are delighted to be working with our partners, Wellingborough Norse and the police, to pilot this scheme, which forms part of the safer, stronger neighbourhood partnership for Queensway and Hemmingwell estates that works with local people to help improve local services.

“I hope that passers-by will enjoy the mural for many years to come.”

Queensway ward councillor, Andrew Scarborough, added: “This is a really excellent project which shows clearly how much local young people care about the place where they live and how, with the right support and backing, they can make a real difference.

“Well done to all involved.”