The Home Office is offering up to £10,000 funding for street artists to paint murals in Central St Leonards. A number of artists have put themselves forward; but the promoters are still waiting, after a month of promotion, for property owners to offer bare walls, shop shutters or other vertical spaces to receive a mural makeover. Any takers?

John Pope (Judges Bakery) 

The project is part of the Home Office’s national £450,000+ Safer Streets  project, which aims to make streets “look safer as well as being safer”. It is co-ordinated by the Hastings Business Crime Reduction Partnership.

Manager of the partnership, John Bownas, says: “This will be a really great way to bring more vibrant splashes of colour to the town and help draw in more customers to local shops. By making the town look more cared for, it will improve the sense of safety for everyone who lives, works and shops there.

“It’s been great to have the Home Office allow us the opportunity to use this grant fund in such a flexible way. The bulk of the money will go on the obvious things like upgraded locks and alarm systems for homes and shops, as well as a really good quality CCTV system for the town centre. However, the general upkeep of an area is really key to how safe people feel – so the powers-that-be have agreed we can use some of the money on clean-ups and work to repair broken shop windows, as well as initiatives like this to bring art and colour to St Leonards to keep up the momentum of pride and care that’s been so evident over the last few years.”

Jack Thurgar (Bexhill seascape)

Mural awards will be made of amounts between £400 and £1,500 depending on the scale of the project. 

Details of artists who have signed up to be considered for commissions are published on the project website www.safer-stleonards.org/mural-grants: they include Jack Thurgar, who has recently completed a seascape mural in Bexhill; John Pope, responsible for the Judges Bakery graphic in the Old Town; and Nicola Jones.

Applications will be assessed by the project team, and checks will be made with Hastings Borough Council to ensure there are no planning concerns. 


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