Manchester Evening News
Residents put their art into reshaping a derelict park
Friday May 28 1999
There's no trouble at VIctoria Mill, thanks to Miles Platting residents and artists. Together with Groundwork Manchester, they have reshaped the derelict park, next to Rochdale Canal, for the new millennium. It now features unique art works such as special fencing panels and mosaics, designed and made by locals working with artists.
Schools, residents groups, elderly and people all helped develop these themes. Community link officer Jason Brindle of Groundwork Manchester said: "We tended to find people were negative at first - they didn't believe anything was going to happen. They felt they heard it before. But people are certainly a lot more positive now, especially the younger kids. They can't wait for it to be finished and open."
Artists Tracey Sanders-Wood and Victoria Hawkes helped locals create the park's central mosaic. It shows Celtic plaits to represent the large Irish, Scottish and Welsh community in the area and its history of plaiting bullrushes. In the centre is a figure called Annabella - a ghost reputed to be Victoria Mill. Other features include stainless steel panels set into the footpaths, each showing an illustrated letter. Together they spell out sentences from poems written by local children.
The park is the second of six sites in Miles Platting to be upgraded. The park will open on June 5 with a special party including music, performances, sports events and play schemes.
PHOTOGRAPH: ARTISTIC licence ... artists Jai Moodie and Tracey Sanders-Wood