Accrington art project commemorates Hyndburn's First World War dead

Blackburn Citizen: Artist in residence Iain Broadley Artist in residence Iain Broadley

A COMMUNITY art project will commemorate those who lost their lives in the First World War – and the whole of Hyndburn is invited to join in.

Artist Iain Broadley has created the ‘Bloody Hell’ First World War art and research project, mainly after taking inspiration from the Accrington Pals.

Iain, artist in residence at Accrington Library, said: “I was really keen to create a project that would engage the public, and bring the community together. The Pals are an important feature of life in Hyndburn and their heritage really sums up the area.

“I was also keen to create an art project that men would be eager to get involved in. I work in occupational health and men often find it hard to express themselves and there is very little in terms of creative projects aimed at them.”

Iain said he was equally keen to hear from women, or men, of all ages, and from all walks of life. He has started holding drop-in sessions every Monday, from 2pm to 4pm, at the library, during which people can discuss their creative ideas with him.

Iain will then guide them in the best way of creating a work of art from their ideas.

Iain said: “The First World War is one of those subjects that everyone has some feelings or opinions about – whether it’s down to what they’ve seen in films, what their grandparents have told them, or what they saw themselves.

“I’ve been working with a war veteran, who is building a model trench, but I’ve also been working with a 20-year-old artist who has been doing pencil sketches. Other people have written poems.”

Once collected, the art work will be displayed as part of a wider First World War exhibition in the Haworth Art Gallery, from March 22 to May 25.

Yvonne Robins, gallery co-ordinator, said: “There will be an exhibition displaying medals and artefacts, and there will be a second room holding a display by Broadfield School, in Oswaldtwistle, which focuses on what it was like to be a child during war-time. Then we will have the special Bloody Hell display created by the public.”

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