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Barney Art Project – HMP Durham

17 Jan 2020
The mural, which is currently been worked on by Barney Art students,
as part of the project

Well done to all Sixth Formers involved in the HMP Durham Art Project, led by Mrs Kate Baptist, Head of Art at Barney.

The ongoing project, in collaboration with charity Nepacs, has seen the creation of a mural, which the pupils have helped to design, draw and paint over a series of visits. The aim of the project is to improve the environment and experiences of families and significant others when visiting their loved ones at the prison.

Earlier this week, a group of students, Mrs Baptist and Headmaster Mr Jackson visited HMP Durham to carry out further work on the mural (pictured) and meet with representatives of Nepacs and the prison.

Tracy Hawthorn from Nepacs approached Mrs Baptist to help produce the mural along the theme of ‘local landmarks’.

HMP Durham holds approximately 1,000 male prisoners, mostly from the North East of England. It is the only remand prison in the North East and as such houses prisoners who are awaiting trial dates for their offence or are waiting to be sentenced.

Tracey Hawthorn said: “To have a group of young enthusiastic people who are willing to give their own time, knowledge and expertise is absolutely fantastic. We have been overwhelmed by their kindness and interest in making a difference to others that are less fortunate than themselves.

“We also appreciate the time and effort that Kate Baptist has willingly invested in making this project happen. It is obvious how much she is dedicated to the holistic development of the students and the many ways in which they are able to make a difference.

“The Governor of HMP Durham, Phil Husband, personally came to the hall to meet Kate and the students as did the Head of Operations, Julie Taylor, and both were very impressed by the thoughtfulness and dedication of the students enthusiasm to help.”

Mrs Baptist added: “I am proud of our students who have utilised their spare time and managed their busy schedules effectively to be able to give back to the community and support Nepacs with this project. We have a cohort of very talented Art students at Barney and it shows with the planning, design and creation of the mural.

“We are delighted to have supported HMP Durham and Nepacs, and hopefully the mural will make visits a little easier for loved ones, especially children, during what can be quite a daunting experience.”