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Art stars of the future on the right track thanks to link up with Ipswich train station

hands in the middle

A group of talented students from Suffolk New College have created some first-class art designs that have proved to be just the ticket after being unveiled at Ipswich rail station.

The project, funded by the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership, saw art and design learners from the College work together with Greater Anglia to revamp one of the main bridges at this busy commuter hotspot.

The project came about thanks to a link-up with the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership (ESLCRP) who made the initial introduction between the two organisations.

Students were given a brief (by Greater Anglia) and work commenced back in 2021.

After a few false starts because of lockdown, a series of original artwork aimed at celebrating Ipswich and the county of Suffolk now sits proudly in place at this prominent location at the station.

One of the students involved in the partnership is Poppy Porter, 19, from Ipswich. Polly is on a level three art and design course. Poppy said:

“It makes me feel proud of my accomplishments and gives my work value. I’m hoping it will get my work out there and I’ll gain some connections.”

Madison Garwood, 17, from Kesgrave is also on a level three art and design course. Madison said:

“The fact that thousands of people will see it is quite thrilling.”

Millie Perkins, 18 from Aldeburgh is on the level three course as well. Millie said:

“It was great to be involved in a real life project. I’ve created a digital piece on the house in the clouds in Thorpeness. I think this (experience) will help me in the future.”

Aaron Lockwood is an art and design lecturer at Suffolk New College. Aaron said:

“It’s been a long process that started before lockdown. Our students were asked to create some work for the bridge as it was being renovated. It’s an interesting space and it has been good for the students to have their placed artwork in the real world. It’s been a good experience for them. It’s great for their development. All the work is related to Ipswich and Suffolk. We’d like to thank Greater Anglia, Ipswich rail station and the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership for this opportunity.”

Aaron Taffera, Chair of the ESLCRP said:

“We were delighted to facilitate this project that will help to bring the work of talented local students to a wider audience.

“We look forward to working together on more exciting projects in the future to help continue to build positive links between the railway and the communities it serves.”                                                           

Alan Neville, Greater Anglia’s Customer and Community Engagement Manager, said,

“We are very grateful to the community rail partnership, Suffolk New College and of course, the talented artists who have transformed the footbridge into a vibrant art gallery following its refurbishment. The footbridge looks bright and welcoming and I’m sure the art works will be enjoyed by the many passengers that pass through Ipswich station every day.”

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