Retford’s latest town improvement revealed thanks to Local Improvement Scheme
A new mural designed by local artists and children, is the latest in a series of improvements which aims to put Retford even more firmly on the map thanks to Nottinghamshire County Council's Local Improvement Scheme.
The new 36-ft Canal Heritage Mural forms part of an investment worth more than £45,000 designed to highlight some of the town’s historical features, improve the environment and boost tourism.
Nottinghamshire County Council is contributing half of the project costs (£22,638) after a successful bid for Local Improvement Scheme funding by Retford Business Forum. This is being match-funded by Bassetlaw District Council.
The mural, which features an illustrative history of the Chesterfield Canal in Retford, was created by local artist Jenny King and other local artists from Art Tempo, school children from Ordsall Junior school and Retford Rainbows.
Six heritage information boards have also been installed along the Chesterfield Canal through Retford, giving more detailed information of Canal’s fascinating history.
Nottinghamshire County Council Chairman, Cllr Kevin Rostance, Bassetlaw District Council Chairman Cllr Debbie Merryweather and the Mayor of Retford Garry Clarkson all helped to unveil the mural.
Councillor John Handley, Vice-Chairman of the Communities & Place Committee at Nottinghamshire County Council also attended. He said:
“This new artwork is part of a wider signage and street furniture project which will help high-light the wonderful heritage of Retford, thanks to a contribution from Nottinghamshire County Council’s Local Improvement Scheme.
“I am delighted that we have been able to fund this project in time for the 2020 Mayflower Pilgrim anniversary celebrations, which we anticipate will help put Retford even more firmly on the map and provide a significant boost to the North Nottinghamshire economy.”
Nottinghamshire County Councillor Steve Vickers, the County Councillor for Retford East, who backed the project said:
“We are dedicated to supporting local community projects such as this through the Local Improvement Scheme. This impressive new mural is part of a much wider scheme which will really enhance the look and feel of our town for the benefit of residents, businesses and visitors. We are dedicated to support local community projects such as this through the Local Improvement Scheme.”
The need for improved directional signage and information throughout the town was highlighted as part of a Signage Strategy, commissioned by the District Council and supported by Retford Business Forum and Retford Civic Society.
Rick Brand, Chair of Retford Business Forum, said:
“We are delighted to have been able to work in partnership with Retford Civic Society in successfully applying for Nottinghamshire County Council’s Local Improvement Scheme and Bassetlaw District Council funding.
“This has enabled us to deliver such an important improvement to the Retford environment.
“The result of the collaboration between Pam Barnsdale, Art Tempo, led by Jenny King, Ordsall Junior School, and Retford Rainbows will entertain and inform everyone using the path and will cheer up this important pathway significantly.”
Cllr Deborah Merryweather, Chairman of Bassetlaw District Council, said:
“I was honoured to be part of the official opening of the Canal Heritage Mural and would like to thank the artists, school children and all of the community groups who have worked so hard to create this wonderful piece of artwork.
“Working in partnership with the Retford Business Forum, Retford Civic Society and the County Council, we will be unveiling even more elements of this wider scheme that will help visitors to find their way around Retford and make it an even more attractive place for visitors and residents.”
The improved signage in the town centre will also form an extension to the signposting and station improvement scheme which is being funded by an LNER Community Fund Grant to improve access to the Retford Train Station.
The wider signage scheme is expected to be complete by the end of the year.