A Gift For Dunton Hills

Designing a picnic blanket for future residents of Brentwood Borough

A Gift for Dunton Hills was a community arts project involving local people from the Brentwood area. Artist Becky Vincer worked with community groups to create art and share stories about making, sharing and enjoying food with other people. Their ideas and artworks have been brought together to create a design for a picnic blanket.

The groups who took part include: Endeavour Youth Club, Daily Bread Community Café, Forget Me Not Activity Club, Tots Aloud, West Horndon Primary School, and visitors to Warley Playing Fields Family Fun Day.

Each group took part in different creative workshops, for example: pupils from West Horndon Primary School drew pictures and made prints of things you might enjoy at a celebratory picnic, the Forget Me Not Activity Group explored floral scents and flavours before creating their own bouquets, people at the Daily Bread Community Café made stamps inspired by growing their own vegetables and Endeavour Youth Club made patterns using collage techniques while discussing the best fictional location for a picnic with friends.

The project was commissioned by Essex Cultural Diversity Project and Brentwood Borough Council, supported by Arts Council England. Dunton Hills Garden Village is a new settlement proposed in Brentwood Borough, the picnic blanket design will be shared with the housing developers as a suggested welcome gift for future residents of Dunton Hills.

The project culminated in an exhibition at Brentwood Library for the month of February 2023.

“The Council is keen to embed community identities into the new garden village and engage residents in place-making and we are thankful to Arts Council England and Homes England, who have provided funding to enable this creative endeavour. We hope Becky’s commission will assist the borough and others in welcoming the village’s new residents, making them feel part of the community and connected to their new neighbourhoods.”

Councillor Garry White, Chair of Housing Committee

“Partnership is at the heart of Essex Cultural Diversity Project’s work, and this is a great opportunity to continue our creative collaboration with Brentwood Borough Council, to support artists and communities from diverse backgrounds as part of our ongoing programme of place-based commissions”

Indi Sandhu, Creative Director and CEO, Essex Cultural Diversity Project

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