Dipton school children have put their artistic skills to good use, creating a selection of safety posters for a new housing development in the village.
Pupils from Collierley Nursery and Primary School can now see their designs displayed on the hoardings around the Coppice Heights development – just off Palmer Road. They hope their posters will inform the public about how to stay safe around construction sites.
A winning poster design – drawn by seven year old Myhia – was unveiled at the opening of the development’s brand new show home, at which she and some of her classmates were welcomed as VIP guests.
The children have been working with representatives from Durham Villages Regeneration Company (DVRC), the partnership between Durham County Council and regeneration specialist Keepmoat Homes, which is building 59 two, three and four bedroomed homes on the site.
Angela McDermid, Head Teacher, said: “Representatives from DVRC visited the school and spoke with the children about the construction work being undertaken in our community. They were told about building site safety and then entered a poster design competition to share what they had learned. It was a fantastic and informative experience and we are already looking to partner with DVRC on future school initiatives.”
Cllr. Carl Marshall, Chairman of DVRC and Durham County Council’s cabinet member for economic regeneration, said: “We have been working with the schoolchildren, talking about what goes in to building a house and how the area around where they live is evolving.
“Our partnership approach through this joint venture has enabled us transform council owned land into much needed new homes and also engage school children with the construction industry and the importance of site safety.”
Geoff Scott, Social and Economic Impact Manager with Keepmoat Homes North East, added: “We’re delighted that the children from Collierley Primary School were able to launch these show homes. Their creativity was clearly on display during the poster challenge and the standard was very high, so a special congratulations must go to them all but especially to Myhia.”
The Coppice Heights development is one of four live DVRC developments, with others at Seaham, Peterlee and Chester-le-Street delivering a further 278 homes.
Since formation in 2001 the partnership has invested over £150 million, creating more than 1,300 homes – around 25% of them for shared ownership or affordable rent. A unique profit sharing arrangement has also provided funds in support of local authority initiatives and services.