Thame Town Council is really excited to announce the successful appointment of Nicola Henshaw who will lead the way in implementing some new Public Art across Thame, funded by Section 106 monies.
Section 106 agreements raise money for infrastructure to support new housing developments. They are drawn up by SODC before they grant planning permission, so the developer is legally bound to deliver the infrastructure agreed. Money is collected from the developer once the planning permission is implemented and when certain points in the agreement have been met. Included in this funding is money that is restricted to be spent on certain areas, and one of these is Public Art.
To avoid the installation of various pieces of art that have little significance and seem a waste of money, a Public Art Strategy was created by a working group that recruited members of the community alongside Thame Town Councillors and an SODC Arts Officer. This strategy identified locations for Public Art, as well as aims and ambitions for how it could be used to meet needs in the community as well as something beautiful to look at.
The first project, to be led by Nicola Henshaw, will aim to improve the wayfinding around Thame so that residents and visitors are encouraged to walk more, rather than always use their cars. Nicola says ‘The public art commissions I undertake involve community workshops which are an integral part of the artwork I create. This gives the community an important sense of ownership and involvement in the project. A love of narrative forms is key to my work. I am fascinated by stories and social history; memories, which can be passed down to future generations, create a legacy and pride in belonging to a community’. Find out more about her here
We can’t wait to get going on this work which will launch in September, so watch this space to find out more.