Young artists inspire MP's eco thoughts
  • 09 05 2016

Young artists inspire MP's eco thoughts

Source: Steve Loader

Tracey Crouch – Chatham and Aylesford MP and new mum – has told 65 young local artists how they made her think anew about the environment, after capturing the diversity of life in, on and beside the River Medway.

But their creations also gave headaches to judges awarding more than £800 worth of prizes in the second Peters Village community’s Tri-History Arts Competition, for primary schoolchildren in the neighbouring villages of Wouldham, Burham and Eccles.

“Choosing the winners was hard enough last year, but even harder this time,” said judges’ chairman, Tonbridge and Malling Cllr and Deputy Mayor elect Roger Dalton, before asking Tracey Crouch to present awards for the competition, sponsored by Peters Village developer Trenport Investments Ltd and its site contractor Bam Nuttall.

Ms Crouch, recently returned to duties after the birth of her son Freddie three months ago, congratulated the children at the prize giving in The Old School Community Centre, Burham.

She added: “Your entries look amazing and show just what nature and wildlife means to you. With little Freddie just coming into the world, it makes me even more aware of how much we all need to value the environment.”

TC and RD with winners

PICTURED: Tracey Crouch MP and Cllr Roger Dalton with (left to right) Gold winner Harry Elsdon, Silver winner Neah Haque, and Bronze winner Maisie Hunter.

Trenport Director Chris Hall also praised the youngsters and made reference to the new Medway bridge being completed as part of the £50 million Peters Village infrastructure: 

“Trenport and Bam Nuttall are delighted to continue our association with your schools and I’m also pleased to see so many bridges featured. It suggests that I’m not only in the presence of many budding artists, but engineers too – this country needs engineers as well as artists.”

The winners were:

Gold Prize (£250 and certificate, plus a £10 voucher for every classmate) - Harry Elsdon of Wouldham for an abstract sculpture using wood, metal and rope found along the banks of the Medway. Harry's entry is pictured at the top of the page.

Silver Prize (£100 and certificate) - Neah Haque of Wouldham for abstract impressions using various materials to show the river and its surroundings

Bronze Prize (£50 and certificate) - Maisie Hunter of Burham for a 3D model of the river, fish, banks, and flora

There were also 16 ‘Highly Commended’ awards: seven won by Burham, six by Eccles and three by Wouldham. Each received a £10 voucher.

Competition organiser and Trenport Community Liaison Manager Shirley Boards said after the prize giving (Wednesday 27 April): “This annual competition was inspired by Trenport’s archaeological surveys ahead of developing the new Peters Village community.

“These showed how much the River Medway meant to past cultures living there and this year’s theme for the children was ‘The River and what it means to me’, but the competition’s overall title is the Tri-History Arts Competition, as entrants may draw inspiration from the area’s rich natural, social or industrial history.

“There is also the intention that competition entries may inspire public arts used on the Peters Village site – the children’s artistic creations could become something permanent.”

“The main target is Year 5 pupils (aged 9-10) at Peters Village’s three neighbouring village schools: Wouldham All Saints CE Primary; Burham CE Primary; and St Mark's CE Primary, Eccles. 

“The 2015 inaugural competition also invited entries from the schools as a whole and offered £2,500 in prize money, but this approach is reserved for every third year to avoid overloading the curricular commitments of the schools and their staff.

“Trenport and Bam Nuttall’s sponsorship included visiting art mentors Colleen Dunn and Lou Hodgson from ‘Art And...’ who managed the creative side and workshops for the competition.”

PICTURED BELOW: (from top) Silver and Bronze Award winning entries from Neah Haque (Wouldham) and Maisie Hunter (Burham) respectively

Silver Award WinnerBronze Award Winner