NNUH and Mile Cross Primary School art collaboration

Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has joined forces with N&N Hospitals Charity and a Norwich primary school to enhance the environment of our paediatric theatres complex, due to open later this year.

More than 120 pupils of all ages at the school were invited to review the imagery created by our artist Toby Rampton and to come up with their own artwork as part of their response.  Their artwork will be displayed elsewhere in the hospital. Pupils were also asked to come up with names and themes for the rooms with storyteller Amanda Smith by using Toby’s imagery as their source material.

Amanda and Toby have been funded by the N&N Hospitals Charity to provide artwork and text for the paediatric theatres complex.

Toby said: “This project is such an exciting and engaging approach to installing art in a hospital. I have been chipping away at creating a bright visual language for the space that engages children of all ages while also leaving space for their imagination to soar. It’s also really rewarding to be able to give something back to a community that really appreciates this. I’m excited to see where this takes us.”

Building on the theme of the sea, the Broads and wildlife, and using Toby’s artwork, teachers at Mile Cross School have been able to work in elements of the curriculum to add further benefit.

The school’s head of art, Hanna Ruffell said: “It has been a really exciting project for the pupils to be involved with and we have seen some benefits which we had not anticipated.

“Given where we are we have a proportion of pupils for whom English is not their first language so coming up with names for rooms was a challenge for them – but one they met head on.

“And they have really risen to the challenge of producing good artwork and taken extra care with it, knowing it is going to be displayed outside the school.”

They have also been working with storyteller Amanda Smith to add words to go with the artwork.

Amanda said: “This has been amazing. It is such an exciting project, and it will be lovely to see the finished product.”

NNUH Environmental Arts Manager, Emma Jarvis added: “It is always a pleasure working with children to create artwork for the hospital as you never know what inspires them, and their enthusiasm knows no bounds.”

Caroline Banson, NNUH Clinical Lead, said: “This artwork is such good fun and really shows that this is a centre for children with great input from children which helps us ensure that we are creating exactly the right environment for our young patients.”

Our partners Serco will now take over the final stages of the development which should be welcoming its first patients through its doors later this year.

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