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Young artists brighten up bridge to encourage more people to get active

Published: 16 July 2021

Young artists brighten up bridge Jo Pavey with the young artists who helped create the work on the bridge

Schoolchildren from Exeter have been encouraging people to get more active by brightening up a new cycle and footbridge in the city with their artwork.

Youngsters from Willowbrook Primary School and St James School were joined by five-time Olympian Jo Pavey to unveil their designs on the recently opened Summer Lane cycle and pedestrian bridge.

The artwork was part of an initiative by Live and Move, a programme funded by Sport England to support people in Exeter and Cranbrook to lead more active lives.

The schools worked with local artist Stuart Crewes to create community artwork to decorate the bridge. The theme for the designs was ‘what it’s like to be active with your families’.

The Summer Lane Bridge was installed in October 2020 by Devon County Council and opened to the public in February 2021.

Bridge Montage

The bridge is part of the E4 cycle route and is fully accessible for pedestrians, cyclists and mobility aids.

The arty youngsters were congratulated by distance runner Pavey, who spoke with them about finding the sport or activity that they are passionate. She also gifted both schools with signed sports tops.

Cllr Ruth Williams, Exeter City Council’s Lead Councillor for Supporting People, said: “If we have a healthy population in terms of physical fitness it will help with healthy minds as well.

“These children are buzzing about this project and they’ve been talking a lot about how they live and move with their families, and how exercise is really important to them.

“Coming out here today to look at this fantastic artwork, which hopefully will be here for a very long time to come, has been wonderful and the whole project has been great.”

Jo Pavey said: “The children have been brilliant – they’ve worked so hard on this together with the artist, who has done an amazing job, everyone at the school and everyone at Live & Move. They’ve all done a brilliant job.

“This artwork is going to inspire the community to get active, which is brilliant for physical and mental health. It will encourage people to improve their wellbeing and get all the positive benefits of being active, and I’ve really been inspired to see it all – it’s been amazing.”

People are being encouraged to take a picture and send a photo of their trip on the bridge to, or post it on social media using the hashtag #ShareYourMoves.

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