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Pupils bring colour to Hornchurch construction site

Schoolchildren have added a splash of colour to the construction site for a major health development in Hornchurch.

The youngsters’ creative talents are now on display on hoardings at the former St George’s Hospital site off Suttons Lane, where building work is under way on a brand-new health and wellbeing hub.

The vibrant designs for the hoardings were created by pupils at five local schools during 2021 as part of a project led by the Barking-based charity Studio 3 Arts.

Inspired by the wildlife of the surrounding area and the history of the site as a former RAF station during the Second World War, the children developed a selection of drawings that local artist Elaine Tribley then compiled into one overall design surrounding the site.

Some of the budding artists were on hand, along with their teachers, to celebrate the hoardings being unveiled.

Luke Burton, Director of Havering Place Based Partnership at NHS North East London, said: “It’s been fantastic to have so many talented pupils in Havering take part in this project, to help bring some colour and creativity to what will be a vital health and wellbeing facility right in the heart of this community.

“Their artwork is sure to put a smile on the faces of passers-by. We’re excited that work is now under way as this new health and wellbeing centre will support people for generations to come.”

Rosie Ross, Interim Creative Director at Studio 3 Arts, said: “Teachers and pupils really took on board the activities presented to them and produced some incredibly detailed and considered artworks that Elaine Tribley then used to create the final designs.

“We’re grateful to all the children and staff who collaborated on this project.”

The art project involved five schools in Havering – Hacton Primary, RJ Mitchell Primary, Sanders Draper School, Scotts Primary, all in Hornchurch, and Scargill Infant School in Rainham.

Work on the St George’s Health and Wellbeing Hub got under way in December, following government approval of the scheme.

Health and care organisations across north east London have been working together for a number of years to design and develop the hub which will bring together a range of health, social care and community services within brand-new, purpose-built premises to serve people across Havering and its neighbouring boroughs.

The multi-million-pound facility will provide access to GP services, outpatient clinics, mental health services, and diagnostic facilities for earlier cancer diagnosis.

The site will also include provision for local voluntary and community groups, with facilities such as a community café, multi-purpose education and meeting spaces, and a sensory, dementia-friendly communal garden. Work is scheduled for completion in May 2024. More information on the project is available on the NHS NELFT Foundation Trust website