A COMMUNITY arts project in Maryport which has re-vamped art work in a part of the town has been successfully completed.

Since August 2022, CforLP has collaborated closely with a dynamic group of young individuals aged 14-20 from Maryport and local artists to enhance the aesthetic appeal of Mill Race Lonning, a well-used entrance to Maryport town centre.

This project aimed to revamp the artwork in Mill Race Lonning, offering young people a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in a hands-on artistic experience, bringing positive change to their community.

The striking visuals, reflecting the young artists’ interpretations of Maryport’s history and culture, promise to inspire both locals and tourists for years to come.

Beyond its artistic focus, the project also aimed to instil local pride, highlight potential career paths in the culture and arts sector, and foster personal growth by nurturing confidence and skills development among the participating young people.

“The Maryport Community Arts project exemplifies our commitment to nurturing young talent and channelling their creativity toward leading positive change in their community,” said Rhianna Smith, Early Careers Project Lead at CforLP.

“We are grateful to Cumberland Council and Maryport Harbour Authority for their support, and we are immensely proud of the dedication and enthusiasm shown by the young individuals from Maryport who have brought their artistic vision to life and gained valuable tools and experience that will serve them well in the future.”

News and Star: The space has been transformed by the art work.The space has been transformed by the art work. (Image: Centre for Leadership and Performance)

One of the young people who took part, Phoebe Eve, reflected on her time volunteering on the project and said: “I have gained more skills from the Maryport Arts Project than I ever thought I would, my confidence has grown with public speaking and leading projects, I feel I can now professionally lead a team and I feel proud of the work I have done in my community.”

Chair of Cumberland Council, Cllr Carni McCarron-Holmes, added: “The young people have made an amazing job of transforming Mill Race Lonning. Their designs pick up on many of Maryport’s landmarks, including historic Christ Church which is a key regeneration project for the Council. It is great to see them identifying the places and features which make their town so special – and doing it in a way which is colourful, imaginative and will really make people smile.

“Thank you to all of them for bringing this location to life.”

The project received invaluable support from local companies and the community, exemplifying the power of community engagement in driving positive change.

In-kind contributions were offered by West Port, Balfour Beatty Kilpatrick, Bechtel, Maryport Library and local businesses surrounding Mill Race Lonning. The final design was made possible with expert guidance and generous support from local artists, including Jenny Daymond, Rachel Gaw, Joanne Little, and Lisa Johnstone.