THE hoarding Russell Scott Primary, Denton, created to go around their playing field as it was being refurbished were sheer poetry.
Not only has it won the 2017 Ivor Goodsite competition, but it has also earned the school a visit from Manchester poet Tony Walsh, better known as Longfella, who made such an impression with his poem “This is the Place” at the Albert Square vigil following the Arena attack.
Tony grew up in Denton. He lived on Acres Street and attended Denton Central Primary School, Duke Street. He will be visiting the Clare Street school on Tuesday, July 4, to take part in morning assembly at 9 o’clock.
Headteacher Steve Marsland said: “This is fantastic news. We’re really looking forward to Tony Walsh coming in to work with the children and to produce a poem about our school, the community of Denton and its heritage.”
Cllr Lynn Travis, Tameside Council’s executive member for lifelong learning, added: “I’m sure everyone at Russell Scott must be thrilled at the thought of a visit from Longfella. I was at the Albert Square vigil for his powerful recitation of ‘This is the Place’ and he really captured the mood of the moment.
“The children did the same with their hoarding which was their own tribute to the victims of the May 22 outrage. They did a really splendid job and I congratulate them on their creativity and their success.”
Now in its fifth year, the Ivor Goodsite competition allows children of all ages to unleash their artistic skills on site hoardings which become large canvases for their imaginations.
Any organisation registered with the Considerate Constructors Scheme can enter the competition and invite their local school, college or community group to help them design and decorate hoardings to transform them into attractive murals.
Manchester’s symbol, the bee, features prominently on the hoarding, as do extracts from “This is the Place”. There are 22 bees – one for each Arena victim – and they are a poignant reminder of Greater Manchester’s decision to choose love as its response to the attack, rather than retaliation and hatred.
The hoarding also reflects Denton’s industrial heritage. It is in the style of LS Lowry and combines mills, hat works and coal mining with Manchester’s modern skyline. Fields and flowers evoke a bright future. It also incorporates a railway viaduct that features a tribute to Ariana Grande’s One Love concert.
Russell Scott’s prize for winning the competition is a visit from Ivor Goodsite himself and “a whole host of goodies”. The hoarding will be included in a competition brochure.
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