A stunning new mural spanning 50 metres has been revealed at a railway station in an area of Bristol renowned for street art. The Montpelier station mural commissioned by the Severnside Community Rail Partnership was designed and created by local artist Silent Hobo. The mural is based on the four seasons and features images of flora and fauna often seen around the suburban Bristol station including badgers and deer, alongside other snippets of local life.
While the spray painting was in progress, young people from two local schools visited the station and were treated to a Street Art Master Class where they all learned about seeking correct permissions before using spray paints, and with the help of Silent Hobo and volunteers from the University of the West of England, they even got to have a go themselves.
A section of the mural is dedicated to the Crimestoppers Fearless Youth Service, a resource designed and developed to encourage and empower young people to make their community a safer place. Providing information and advice about crimes that might affect them, the Fearless Campaign was established to challenge and stimulate debate whilst educating young people about the ways that they can pass on information 100% anonymously.
Heather Cullimore of the Severnside Community Rail Partnership said “We work closely with train operator GWR to find solutions to issues at local stations. This area of Montpelier station was prone to graffiti tagging. Experience has taught us that where quality street art is commissioned it will brighten up the station and will be respected and left alone by vandals, so the station feels a much safer and more welcoming place. We always aim to involve local schools in such projects but this is the largest mural we have commissioned to date. We are delighted with the result.”
Crimestoppers Regional Manager, West Country, Karen MacDonald, said: “It has been a pleasure to be involved in this project raising awareness about Crimestoppers and fearless.org both of which provide a way for people to report information about crime and criminal activities 100% anonymously . Always.”
GWR Regional Development Manager Matthew Barnes said:
“We were delighted to be involved in this project. Community rail plays such an important part in helping us to maintain and improve our stations for all who use them, and we are grateful to those who give up their time voluntarily.”
Rachel Rodd of The Dolphin School said “The children at The Dolphin School were so lucky to be given the opportunity to contribute to the community they are a part of. They absolutely loved the experience and were incredibly engaged and enthusiastic throughout the process. Going back when it was all finished was such a treat, the kids ‘didn’t realise how good it was actually going to be!’
Nigel Collins of Kingsweston School said “Graffiti has so many negative connotations but it inspired conversation throughout my group, who have a range of complex learning and social needs. It drew out opinion, empathy, support and praise from them. They all had an opportunity to participate in a very real way and, I believe, came away with a sense of personal ownership of the final outcome.”
A Timelapse video of the creation: