Kensington pupils’ art adds splash of colour to new home developments

Pupils who won an art competition to design images for two Kensington housing development hoardings have seen their artwork come to life.

The students, who came from five schools in North Kensington, visited the sites on Kensal Road and Hewer Street with Councillor Kim Taylor-Smith today and each received a set of paints for their work.

The competition was organised by contractor Willmott Dixon in collaboration with Kensington & Chelsea Council and was centred on three themes brilliant buildings (saving energy), building lives (supporting our community) and better planet (protecting the environment).

The themes were drawn from Willmott Dixon’s ‘Now or Never’ strategy, which focuses on environmental and social challenges in the modern world, and the council’s own value of ‘Putting Communities First’.

Speaking about their art, the competition winners said their inspiration ranged from the importance of inclusivity to their sense of pride about where they live.

Pupils from Barlby Primary School pose with their competition art at the Kensington development site
LUCK OF THE DRAW: Pupils from Barlby Primary School pose with their winning artwork

Alisha, 11, from Barlby primary school said: “My artwork shows how the Earth could look like if humans living on it would treat it better.”

Brunel primary school pupil Gabriella, eight, explained the meaning behind her winning image.

She said: “We started with the virtue of respect, and the doors [in the picture] represent lives and that it doesn’t matter which skin colour you are.”

Speaking about the decision to involve pupils in the project, Taylor-Smith, Lead Member, Grenfell, Housing and Social Investment, emphasised the importance of including the younger generation in future planning and projects.

He said: “Some of these children and their families may end up living in one of these new homes, so it’s really important that they feel part of what we are building and understand what we are doing.

“The artwork is impressive and after talking to the pupils I have been blown away by their desire to improve our planet and how conscious they are of the environment and how we all need to work together to improve how we treat the planet.”

pupils from a North Kensington Primary School are eager to show off their artwork from the art competition
COMMUNITY PRIDE: pupils from St Mary’s Primary School are eager to show off their artwork

The council hope to invite some of the pupils back to visit the sites when they are closer to completion as part of their emerging social investment approach.

The two development sites included in the competition are part of the Council’s Phase 1 sites in its New Homes Delivery Programme.

The programme aims to build 600 new homes, 300 of which are for social rent.

OPENING MORE DOORS: Councillor Taylor-Smith speaks about the new housing developments and the amenities that they will offer

The site at 175-177 Kensal Road will offer 37 new homes, 27 of which will be social rent and 10 which will be intermediate rent, alongside flexible community and retail space.

The homes built at 15-17 Hewer Street will offer 10 intermediate rent homes to key workers.

The two development projects will cost £25.6m.

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