Reducing graffiti on our local walls, bridges and underpasses is an ongoing challenge, so when the Aylesbury Society approached Transport for Buckinghamshire (TfB) with an idea for a mural, TfB jumped at the idea.
Aylesbury High Street canal bridge has suffered with graffiti throughout its life, and the suggestion of painting a mural containing local scenes was warmly welcomed and likely to enhance the area. The Aylesbury Society enlisted the help of Aylesbury Youth Action (AYA) to design and paint the mural which contains reminders of the historic Friars Club, St Mary’s Church, the Hazell Watson and Viney print works, and showing Aylesbury through time with paralympians, the new university campus and the recently erected wind turbine.
Painting designs such as murals has historically shown a reduction in graffiti, and with an addition of a top layer of anti-graffiti coating, this mural should remain in all its glory for many years to come.
Ken Evans from the Aylesbury Society said, "The Aylesbury Society was very impressed by the colourful mural painted by AYA on the wall under the Oakfield Road bridge. They decided it would be an excellent idea to ask the group to paint a mural under the High Street bridge. Approval was obtained from Transport for Buckinghamshire (who own the bridge) a year ago. A lot of water has flowed under the bridge since then, but the mural is at last being painted."
Sara Butler, Manager at Aylesbury Youth Action said, "I am delighted that Aylesbury Youth Action has been invited to be part of this exciting project. The young people have enjoyed creating the design, and we look forward to seeing members of the community get involved in creating the mural over the week, assisted by Project Workers Suz and Salma."
Paul Irwin, Deputy Cabinet Member for Transport at Buckinghamshire County Council said, "I'm delighted that we can support initiatives such as this, which will create a beautiful addition to our County Town. The hard work and effort that has gone into designing this piece is clear, and I hope it becomes as much a landmark as the scenes it contains!"
Initiating the idea and fundraising has all been undertaken by the Aylesbury Society, with TfB contributing with preparation of the surface and final anti-graffiti coating and Aylesbury Youth Action providing the design and carrying out the painting.
Ken Evans added, "Generous grants were obtained from Aylesbury Vale Community Chest, the Buckinghamshire Community Foundation & Transport for Bucks. Local firms who sponsored the mural were Motts Travel, Dayla Ltd and Michael Anthony Estate Agents, plus a private donor. The total cost of the project is £4,200."
The mural is now complete and can be viewed in all its glory!