Stewartstown Community Group (Mid Ulster Area), working with local young people, have transformed a graffiti hotspot in Ardstewart into a bright, attractive feature which is the talk of the town.
The local group developed the project with assistance from Supporting Communities and funding from the Housing Executive’s Community Grant Scheme. The group liaised with Northern Ireland Electricity, who agreed that the electricity substation was in real need of attention, especially because it is situated next to a children’s play area. They then commissioned Castledawson artist Mary T. Gribbin to work with local children from the estate who decided the content and design for the new mural. The children really took to the project and were keen to help out at every opportunity with the painting.
John Rush, chairman of the community group and a local resident commented, “It’s great to see that such a small amount of money has made a huge difference to the residents of the estate, especially the children. I’d like to thank the Housing Executive and NIE for providing the funding and Mary T. and the local children for doing a great job with the artwork.”
Martin Quinn from Supporting Communities stated, “The estate inspection that we organised in Stewartstown highlighted the unsightly appearance of the substation and the potential for improvement. We provided support to the local group to access the funding and draw up a project specification - Mary T. and the young people did the rest! The project is a super example of what we promote in terms of community involvement in local projects.”
Margaret Bradley from the Housing Executive added, “The Housing Executive was delighted to support this project as the artwork has really transformed the square close to the play park. It is brilliant to see young people so involved in their area”.