An 18-month project between the Turner Contemporary and local schools is transforming the seaside town – and students’ lives
From the imposing and angular glass and steel Turner Contemporary gallery to the retro charms of the restored Dreamland amusement park, the Margate seafront is enjoying a revival. But visitors arriving this week will see four attractions that have opened in neglected areas of the town often unseen by day trippers, including a woodland rollercoaster, a colourful theatre space, and a giant marble run.
What will make these special is that they are being created by pupils from four local primary schools as the culmination of an 18-month project run by Turner Contemporary called Art Inspiring Change. Set the challenge of inspiring the whole town to engage with art, the 80 children involved have designed and made the work on display, appointed artists to assist them and presented their ideas to Thanet council to gain planning permission to regenerate the sites.
People attending the town’s job centre will encounter a performance space called the Bloop created by pupils from Holy Trinity and St John’s school. They can dress up as different characters, the idea being that this might inspire them to try a new role, or simply cheer them up. One pupil, Emily, said the site was chosen because “people will be feeling sad”, while another participant, Alyssa, said “when you look at the job centre you will see all these colours”. read more