Leeds schoolchildren’s art project is ‘jewel in the crown’ at shopping park

Giant piece of artwork will celebrate Queen’s 90th birthday

A group of Leeds schoolchildren have teamed up with a city shopping park to provide a very special decoration for the Queen’s 90th birthday – a giant bejewelled crown.
Year 5 and 6 children at Ingram Road Primary School have been working with artists from Crown Point to make ‘jewels’ to adorn the 5ft by 4ft metal crown, which will be displayed in the middle of the roundabout at the centre’s entrance to mark the monarch’s landmark birthday.
Crown Point marketing manager Jay Heath said the retail park was keen to do something special for Her Majesty’s official birthday weekend. “Crown Point is a part of the Crown Estate – effectively owned by the Queen, with the revenues it generates directly contributing to the government for the good of the nation,” she said. “With that in mind, making the giant crown to celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday seemed too good an opportunity to pass up. We are always keen to involve the community in projects like this and are delighted to have been able to work with the Ingram Road pupils.”
More than 100 children at the Holbeck school, aged from nine to 11, worked with the artists over the course of two days to make the various colourful decorations.
Faceless Arts’ creative director Tony Wade said it had been a privilege to be involved in the project. “Each of the jewels actually depict images on the theme of birthdays, royalty and Britain,” said Tony, “and all of the children have done a fantastic job. We’ve worked really hard to make larger-than-life jewels to fix to the crown, which will shine from afar so everyone can appreciate it as they enter and leave Crown Point.
“We’re really proud of the work and can’t wait for people to see the finished crown when it goes on display this weekend,” he said.
The giant piece of artwork – which is weather resistant – will be displayed at Crown Point for two weeks from Saturday, 11 June, before the ‘crown jewels’ are then returned to the school for further display.
Sarah Millard, headteacher of Ingram Road Primary School, said the children had thoroughly enjoyed being a part of the project. “We’ve obviously been discussing the Queen in school and the amazing achievement of Her Majesty becoming the longest reigning monarch in our history,” she said.
“Getting involved in this project enabled the children to help celebrate the Queen’s birthday in a unique and interesting way, and the fact that the artwork will be on display for everyone who goes to Crown Point makes it extra special,” said Miss Millard. “There are a lot of excited young people who can’t wait to now see the finished article.”