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Frome - Press Articles

Victoria Park mural to be unveiled

There will be an official unveiling of artwork in Victoria Park by people with learning disabilities in Frome on Friday 15th July at 11.00am.

People with learning difficulties in Somerset have been working with researcher Rebecca Yeo from UK Disabled Peoples Council. The focus of the work was summarised by Clemma Fleat and Katie Branch from Open Storytellers in Frome. They said, "We face lots of barriers and obstacles. But there are many things we are happy with in our lives. We have hopes and dreams for the future."

Participants put their ideas into drawings or photographs and have been working with research artist Andrew Bolton to combine these into a mural in Victoria Park, Frome.

The work challenges some commonly held ideas about people with learning disabilities. Tim Lumley Smith described his experience. He said, "He will amount to nothing - this is what the doctor said when I was born. But look at me now - how wrong he was!"

This work is taking place at a time when disabled people around the country are being encouraged to choose lifestyles based on their own personal preferences and priorities. This work attempts to help people consider what is important to them, but also to look at the restrictions that exist and how things could be improved. This is particularly challenging at a time of cuts.

A barrier mentioned by many people during this project was lack of transport. As Tim Lumley-Smith from Cheddar put it, "Transport being so bad, I can't get to where I want. There need to be more buses, we need the government to understand." Since these comments were made, bus services in Somerset have been further reduced.

Everyone is warmly invited to come to the opening of the artwork in Victoria Park, on Friday 15th July at 11.00am. The organisers say, "People involved in making the work will explain their messages using words, music and the artwork itself.

Who knows, you may find that the priorities and difficulties expressed are not that different from your own. After all, as Brian Marshall put it, 'We are all human beings.'"

Light refreshments will be available.

Somerset Standard

Park mural puts barriers to life in the spotlight

More than 60 people gathered in Frome Victoria Park for the official opening of a mural created by people with learning difficulties.

The project was funded by the Big Lottery in response to research by the UK Disabled People's Council.

Robin Meader, one of the artists, described the work, before deputy Mayor Pippa Goldfinger cut the ribbon.

A spokeswoman for the event said: "The work describes the things that make people happy and the things that they hope for, as well as the barriers to leading the lifestyles people would choose.

"One of the main barriers that came up in the project was poor public transport."

Open Storytellers composed a song especially for the event entitled Transport Blues. They were accompanied by guitarist Richard Kennedy.

Another issue uncovered in the research was the lack of accessible public toilets.

Nicola Grove, from Open Storytellers, appealed for townsfolk to work together to ensure that Frome was more inclusive and accessible to all.

Disabled create art for park

People with learning difficulties in Somerset have been working with researcher Rebecca Yeo from the UK Disabled People's Council to create a mural in Victoria Park, Frome.

Also working with Clemma Fleat and Katie Branch from Open Storytellers in Frome, participants created drawings or photographs. They then worked with research artist Andrew Bolton to combine these into a mural.

The work challenges commonly-held ideas about people with learning difficulties. Everyone is invited to come to the opening of the artwork in Victoria Park tomorrow at 11am.

People involved in creating the work will explain their messages using words, music and the artwork itself.

Organisers are looking for volunteers to help with the event. If you may be able to help, call Rebecca on 07986 897234.

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