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Council donations get New Forest Mencap's New Milton Queen's jubilee mural project off the ground

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THE creation of a Queen’s platinum jubilee mural in New Milton is finally set to get under way thanks to council donations.

Learning disability charity New Forest Mencap is holding two workshops for the commemorative display to be mounted on the brick wall outside Boots at the junction of Station and Ashley roads in October.

Supported by ceramicists Jules Carpenter and Sally Ovenden, the installation will also celebrate the local Forest and coastline surroundings.

The mural is set for the wall outside Boots
The mural is set for the wall outside Boots

As reported in the A&T, the £5,000 project was under threat when a bid for a grant from Hampshire and Isle of Wight Community Fund failed.

But the town council stepped in, leading to contributions from 10 Hampshire county and New Forest district councillors.

NFDC chair Cllr Alan O’Sullivan said: “I and my fellow councillors were happy to support this initiative which will be enjoyed by residents and visitors to the town for many years to come.”

NFDC chair Cllr Alan O'Sullivan
NFDC chair Cllr Alan O'Sullivan

Boots’ permission for the installation was also secured, with the company agreeing to waive all fees, although a one-off £1,250 landlords/agents fee still applies.

People with learning disabilities are invited to attend the free day-long workshops at the Nedderman Centre in Marryat Road on Saturdays 6th and 13th August.

Ms Carpenter makes and sells her ceramics locally, and is the founder of Empty Bowls which sells potter-made dishes for food charities.

Jules Carpenter
Jules Carpenter

She said: “Being asked to see the New Forest Mencap tile project through to completion is an exciting challenge, giving the opportunity for many to work with clay, resulting in a commemorative platinum jubilee display for the community of New Milton to enjoy.”

Ms Ovenden studied ceramics at Falmouth School of Art and uses a combination of techniques.

Sally Ovenden
Sally Ovenden

Thanking the councillors for their support, New Forest Mencap chair Mike Snell said: “I look forward with excitement and anticipation to seeing the result of our members’ artistic talents.”

Places at the workshops need to be booked by calling Jackie Lillywhite on 07549 073784 or emailing development@newforestmencap.org

Ms Carpenter's work can be followed through her Twitter and Instagram profiles @julesceramics and details of Ms Ovenden's work can be found at justsostudio.com

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